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[ The Right of Translation is m 

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THE present appears to be the first English edition of the 
Timaeus. Indeed since the sixteenth century, during which 
this dialogue was published separately no less than four times, 
it had not, so far as I am aware, been issued apart from the 
rest of Plato's works until the appearance of Lindau's edition, 
accompanied by a Latin translation, in 1828. Lindau's com- 
mentary, though here and there suggestive, does not afford 
much real help in grappling with the main difficulties of the 
dialogue ; and sometimes displays a fundamental misappre- 
hension of its significance. Ten years later came Stallbaum's 
edition ; concerning which it were unbecoming to speak with 
less than the respect due to the zeal and industry of a scholar 
who has essayed the gigantic enterprise of editing with elaborate 
prolegomena and commentary the entire works of Plato, and it 
would be unfair to disparage the learning which the notes 
display: none the less it cannot be denied that in dealing 
with this dialogue the editor seems hardly to have realised 
the nature of the task he has undertaken. Stallbaum was 
followed in 1841 by Th. H. Martin, whose work, published 
under the modest title of ' Etudes sur le Timee de Platon,' 
is far and away the ablest and completest edition of the Timaeus 
which exists. As an exposition of the philosophical import 
of the dialogue I should not be disposed to rate it so very 
highly ; but so far as it deals with the physical and other 
scientific questions discussed and with the numerous grave 
difficulties of detail, it is invaluable : the acuteness and in- 


genuity, the luminous clearness, and (not least) the unfailing 
candour of the editor, deserve all admiration. The debt owed 
to Martin by any subsequent editor must needs be very great. 
The most recent edition known to me was published in 1853 in 
the useful series issued by Engelmann at Leipzig, including text, 
German translation, and rather copious notes. Bockh's ' Speci- 
men editionis' unfortunately is but a small fragment 

The only English translations with which I am acquainted 
are Thomas Taylor's and Prof. Jowett's : in German there are 
several. Martin's edition includes a clear and close French 
rendering, considerably more accurate than Cousin's. 

Among the most valuable and important contributions to 
the explanation of the Timaeus are some writings of August 
Bockh, especially his admirable treatise ' Ueber das kosmische 
System des Platon.' It is much to be regretted that so excellent 
a scholar did not give us a complete edition of the dialogue. 

The chief ancient exponent is Proklos, of whose commentary, 
6eiq rtvl fjioipa, only perhaps one third, a fragment of some 
850 octavo pages, is extant, breaking off at 440. This dis- 
quisition is intolerably verbose, often trivial, and not rarely 
obscure : nevertheless one who has patience to toil through 
it may gain from it information and sometimes instruction ; 
and through all the mists of neoplatonic fantasy the native 
acuteness of the writer will often shine. 

The principal object of this edition is to examine the philo- 
sophical significance of the dialogue and its bearing on the 
Platonic system. At the same time, seeing that so few sources 
of aid are open to the student of the Timaeus, I have done my 
best to throw light upon the subsidiary topics of Plato's dis- 
course, even when they are of little or no philosophical import- 
ance ; nor have I willingly neglected any detail which seemed 
to require explanation. But as in the original these details are 
subordinate to the ontological teaching, so I have regarded 
their discussion as subordinate to the philosophical interpretation 
of this magnificent and now too much neglected dialogue. 

A translation opposite the text has been given with a view 
to relieving the notes. The Timaeus is one of the most difficult 
of Plato's writings in respect of mere language; and had all 
matters of linguistic exegesis been treated in the commentary, 


this would have been swelled to an unwieldy bulk. I have 
hoped by means of the translation to show in many cases how I 
thought the Greek should be taken, without writing a gram- 
matical note ; though of course it has been impossible to banish 
such subjects entirely. 

My obligation to Dr Jackson's essays on the ideal theory 
will be manifest to any one who reads both those essays and my 
commentary. I am as fully as ever convinced of the high 
importance of his contribution to the interpretation of Plato. 
In his essay on the Timaeus indeed there are some statements 
to which I can by no means assent ; but as that paper in its 
present form does not contain Dr Jackson's final expression of 
opinion, I have not thought it necessary to discuss divergencies 
of view, which may prove to be very slight, and which do not 
affect the main thesis for which he is contending. 

Lastly I must thank my friend Dr J. W. L. Glaisher for his 
kindness in examining my notes on the arithmetical passage at 
the beginning of chapter VII, and for mathematical information 
in other respects. 

17 January, 1888. 

P. 204, ist col. of notes, line ai, cancel as erroneous the words 'And if.. .as the first.' 


i. OF all the more important Platonic writings probably Vindica- 
none has less engaged the attention of modern scholars than 

the Timaeus. Nor is the reason of this comparative neglect far ance 
to seek. The exceeding abstruseness of its metaphysical content, * ^e 
rendered yet more recondite by the constantly allegorical mode Timaeus 
of exposition; the abundance of a priori speculation in a domain 
which experimental science has now claimed for its own; the vast ties. 
and many-sided comprehensiveness of the design all have con- 
spired to the end that only a very few of the most zealous students 
of Plato's philosophy have left us any considerable work on 
this dialogue. It has been put on one side as a fantastic, if 
ingenious and poetical, cosmogonical scheme, mingled with -ora- 
cular fragments of mystical metaphysic and the crude imaginings 
of scarcely yet infant science. 

But this was not the position assigned to the Timaeus by 
the more ancient thinkers, who lived 'nearer to the king and the 
truth.' Contrariwise not one of Plato's writings exercised so 
powerful an influence on subsequent Greek thought; not one 
was the object of such earnest study, such constant reference. 
Aristotle criticises it more frequently and copiously than any other 
dialogue, and perhaps from no other has borrowed so much: 
Cicero, living amid a very stupor and paralysis of speculative 
philosophy, was moved to translate it into Latin : Appuleius gives 
for an account of the Platonic philosophy little else but a partial 
abstract of the Timaeus, with some ethical supplement from the 
Republic: Plutarch has sundry more or less elaborate disquisitions 
on several of the subjects handled in it. As for the neoplatonic 
school, how completely their thought was dominated by the 
metaphysic of the Timaeus, despite the incongruous and almost 

P. T. I 





basis of 



tos, Par- 




monstrous accretions which some of them superimposed, is mani- 
fest to any reader of Plotinos or Proklos. Such being the con- 
cordance of ancient authorities, is it not worth while to inquire 
whether they be not justified in attaching so profound a significance 
to this dialogue? 

The object of this essay is to establish that they were justified. 
No one indeed can read the Timaeus, however casually, without 
perceiving that in it the great master has given us some of 
his profoundest thoughts and sublimest utterances : but my aim 
is to show that in this dialogue we find, as it were, the focus to 
which the rays of Plato's thought converge; that by a thorough 
comprehension of it (can we but arrive at this) we may perceive 
the relation of various parts of the system one to another and 
its unity as a whole: that in fact the Timaeus, and the Timaeus 
alone, enables us to recognise Platonism as a complete and co- 
herent scheme of monistic idealism. 

I would not be understood to maintain that Plato's whole 
system is unfolded in the Timaeus; there is no single dialogue 
of which that could be said. The Timaeus must be pieced 
together with the other great critical and constructive dialogues 
of the later period, if we are rightly to apprehend its significance. 
But what I would maintain is that the Timaeus furnishes us with a 
master-key, whereby alone we may enter into Plato's secret cham- 
bers. Without this it is almost or altogether impossible to find 
in Platonism a complete whole ; with its aid I am convinced 
that this is to be done. I am far from undervaluing the difficulty 
of the task I have proposed : but it is worth the attempt, if 
never so small a fraction may be contributed to the whole result. 

With this end in view, it is necessary to consider Plato's 
intellectual development in relation to certain points in the history 
of previous Greek philosophy. These points are all notorious 
enough, but it seems desirable for our present purpose to bring 
them under review. 

2. Now it seems that if we would rightly estimate the task 
which lay before Plato at the outset of his philosophical career 
and appreciate the service he has rendered to philosophy, we 
must throw ourselves back into his position, we must see with 
his eyes and compute as he would have computed the net result 
of preplatonic theorising. What is the material which his pre- 
decessors had handed down for him to work upon? what are 
the solid and enduring verities they have brought to light? and 


how far have they amalgamated these into a systematic theory of 
existence ? 

In the endeavour to answer these questions I think we can 
hardly fail to discern amid the goodly company of those early 
pioneers certain men rising by head and shoulders above their 
fellows : Herakleitos, Parmenides, Anaxagoras, these three. Each 
one of these bequeathed to his successors a great principle 
peculiarly his own; a principle of permanent importance, with 
which Plato was bound to deal and has dealt. And save in so 
far as the Pythagorean theory of numbers may have influenced 
the outward form of his exposition, there is hardly anything in 
the early philosophy before Sokrates, outside the teaching of 
these three men, which has seriously contributed to Plato's store 
of raw material. The synthesis of their one-sided truths required 
nothing less than the whole machinery of Plato's metaphysical 
system : it is from their success and their failure that he takes 
his start the success of each in enunciating his own truth, the 
failure of each to recognise its relations. 

Since these three men, as I conceive, furnished Plato with 
his base of operations or, more correctly perhaps, raised the 
problems which he must address himself to solve, it is incumbent 
on us to determine as precisely as we can the nature of the 
contributions they severally supplied. 

3. The old Ionian physicists were all unknowingly working The 
their way to the conception of Becoming. They did not know 
this, because they knew not that matter, with which alone they kleitos 
were concerned ! , belonged altogether to the realm of Becoming. 
Nor yet did they reach this conception, for they had not been 
able to conceive continuity in change that is to say, they had 
not conceived Becoming. They imagined the indefinite diversity 
of material nature to be the complex manifestations of some 
uniform underlying element, which, whether by condensation and 
expansion or by some more fundamental modification of its sub- 
stance, transmuted itself into this astonishing multiplicity of dis- 
similar qualities. But according to their notion this underlying 
element, be it water or air or some indefinable substrate, existed 
at any given place now in one form, now in another ; that is, it 
abode for a while in one of its manifestations, then changed and 
abode for a while in another. Air is air for a time ; then it is 

1 Of course the antithesis of matter and spirit had not yet presented itself to 
Greek thought. 

I 2 


condensed and turns to water. Thus the notion of continuity is 
absent, and consequently the notion of Becoming. Yet, for all 
that, Thales, Anaximandros, and Anaximenes were on the path to 

The penetrating intellect of Herakleitos detected the short- 
coming of his predecessors. All nature is a single element trans- 
muting itself into countless diversities of form : be it so. But the 
law or force which governs these transmutations must be omni- 
present and perpetually active. For what power is there that 
shall hold it in abeyance at any time ? or how could it intermit 
its own activity without perishing altogether? Therefore there 
can be no abiding in one form; transmutation must be every- 
where ceaseless and continuous, since nature will not move by 
leaps. Motion is all-pervading, and rest is there nowhere in the 
order of things. And this privation of rest is not a matter of 
degree nor to be measured by intervals of time. Rest during an 
infinitesimal fraction of the minutest space which our senses can 
apprehend were as impossible and inconceivable as though it 
should endure for ages. We must see the oSos avw KOTU as 
Herakleitos saw it : all nature is a dizzy whirl of change without 
rest or respite, wherein there is no one thing to which we can 
point and say 'See, it is this, it is that, it is so.' For in the 
moment when what we call ' it ' has begun to be ' this ' or ' that ' 
or ' so,' at that very moment it has begun to pass from the state 
we thus seek to indicate : there is nowhere a fixed point. And 
thus Herakleitos attains to the conception of continuity and 
Becoming. He chose appropriately enough fire, the most mobile 
and impalpable of the four reputed elements, to be the vehicle of 
this never resting activity of nature : but it matters nothing what 
was his material substrate. His great achievement is to have 
firmly grasped and resolutely enunciated the principle of con- 
tinuity and hence of Becoming: for continuity is a mode of 
Becoming, or Becoming a mode of continuity, according as we 
may choose to view it. Moreover, Herakleitos introduces us to 
the antithesis of ov and p.^ ov. We cannot say of any object 'it is 
so,' or use any other phrase which implies stability. Yet the 
thing in some sense or other is, else it would be nothing ; it is 
at any rate a continuity of change. So then the thing is and 
is not ; that is to say, it becomes. Or if, as we watch a falling 
drop of rain, we take any spot in its course which it would just 
fill, we can never say 'it is there,' for it never rests ; yet, by the 


time the drop reaches the earth, that spot has been filled by it. 
The drop has a 'where,' though we can never define the 'where.' 
Thus throughout the teaching of Herakleitos the 'is' is confronted 
by 'is not.' 

4. In the preceding paragraph I have confined myself Result of 
within the limits of the actual teaching of Herakleitos : the Platonic 
developments of it will occupy our attention later on. What then 
is the actual result the contribution to the philosophical capital 
with which Plato had to start? We have conceived change as 
continuous, that is, we have conceived Becoming. And Be- 
coming is negation of stable Being. Also since change is a 
transition, it involves motion : therefore in affirming Becoming we 
affirm Motion. And since change is a transition from one state 
to another, it involves plurality. So in affirming Becoming we 
affirm Multitude. Becoming, Motion, Multitude these are three 
aspects of one and the same fact : and this is the side of things 
which Herakleitos presents to us as the truth and reality of 
nature. The importance of this aspect cannot be exaggerated, 
neither can its insufficiency. 

5. For where does this doctrine leave us in regard to the Impossi- 
acquisition of knowledge? Surely of all men most hopeless. Let \ y ij 
us set aside for the present the question of the relation between the neces- 
subject and object as elaborated in the Theaetetus, and confine s ^ y '" n r 
ourselves simply to the following considerations. The object of Heraklei- 
knowledge must exist : of that which is not there can be no |^ n l 
knowledge. But we have seen that according to Herakleitos it is 
as true to say of everything that it is not as to say that it is : 
therefore at best it is as true that there is no knowledge as 
that there is. Again the object of knowledge must be abiding : 
how can the soul have cognisance of that which unceasingly 
slips away and glides from her grasp? For it is not possible 
that we cognise our elemental substrate now in one form, now 
in another, since change is continuous : there is no footing 
anywhere ; for each thing the beginning of birth is the beginning 
of dissolution ; every new form in the act of supplanting the old 
has begun its own destruction. In this utter elusiveness of fluidity 
where is knowledge to rest ? Plato sums up the matter in these 
words : ei p.fv yap O.VTO TOVTO, rj yvdxri?, TOU yvwats etvat fitj p.c- 
TaTriTrm, /W.CVGI re oV act 17 yptoats /ca! elrj yv<3(ris' (I 8 KCU avro TO 
eiSos fJifTaTriirrei rrjs yvwo-etos, a//,a T* av /^UTaTTiWoi tts dAAo eiSo? 
yvaxrews Kai OVK av eir; yvwcris' i 8t aei fUTaTTiTrrei, aei OVK av fit] 


KCU CK TOUTOU Tou Xoyou cure TO yvoxjoftevov OVTC TO 
fitvov av flrj. Cratylus 440 A. 

Thus the teaching of Herakleitos tends to one inevitable end 
none can know, for nothing can be known. 

Parmeni- 6. Seeing then that Becoming and Multitude are unknow- 

able, are we therefore forced to abandon in despair all striving 
after knowledge? Or is it perchance possible that there exists 
Being or Unity, which abides for ever sure and can be really and 
certainly known? Such at least was the conviction of Parmenides. 

This great philosopher, who may be considered as the earliest 
herald of the idealism which should come but yet was not, set 
about his work by a method widely different from that of the 
Ionian physicists 1 . The lonians indeed, and even Herakleitos 
himself, in a certain sense sought unity, inasmuch as they postu- 
lated one single element as the substrate of material phenomena. 
But such a unity could not content Parmenides. What, he may 
have asked, do we gain by such a unity ? If there is one element 
underlying the appearances of material nature, why choose one 
of its manifestations as the fundamental form in preference to 
another? If the same substance appears now as fire, now as air, 
now as water, what is the use of saying that fire, air, or water is 
the ultimate element ? And if with Anaximandros we affirm that 
the ultimate substance is an undefined unlimited substrate, this is 
only as much as to say, we do not know the substrate of things. 
In any case the supposition of a material substrate leaves us just 
where we were. The unity that pervades nature must be one of 
a totally different sort ; not a material element which is trans- 
formed into multitudinous semblances, but a principle, a formative 
essence, distinct from the endless variety of visible nature. It 
must be no ever-changing substrate, but an essence simple, im- 
mutable, and eternal, far removed from the ken of sensation and 
to be reached by reason alone. And not only must it be verily 
existent, it must be the sum-total of existence ; else would it fail 
of its own nature and fall short of itself. Since then the One is 
and is the whole, it must needs follow that the Many are not at 
all. Material nature then, with all her processes and appearances, 
is utterly non-existent, a vain delusion of the senses : she is Not- 
being, and Not-being exists in no wise only Being is. And since 

1 I take Parmenides as the repre- speaking, a philosopher at all, and 
sentative of Eleatic thought, regard- Zeno as merely developing one aspect 
ing Xenophanes as not, properly of Parmenidean teaching. 


Not-being is not, neither is there Becoming ; for Becoming is the 
synthesis of Being and Not-being. Again if there is not Be- 
coming, Motion exists not either, for Becoming is a motion, and 
all motion is becoming. Multitude, Motion, Becoming all these 
are utterly obliterated and annihilated from out of the nature of 
things : only the One exists, abiding in its changeless eternity of 
stillness 1 . 

7. Such is the answer returned by Parmenides and his school The Elea- 
to the question asked at the beginning of our previous section, takei^by^' 
Material nature is in continual flux, you say, and cannot be itself, is as 
known: good then material nature does not exist. But Being aTthat'of 6 

or the One does exist and can be known, and it is all there is to Heraklei- 
, tos. 


Now it is impossible to conceive a sharper antithesis than 
that which exists at all points between the two theories I have 
just sketched. The Herakleiteans flatly deny all unity and rest, 
the Eleatics as flatly deny all plurality and motion. If then either 
of these schools is entirely right, the law of contradiction is 
peremptory the other must be entirely wrong. Is then either 
entirely right or wrong ? 

We have already admitted that Herakleiteanism presents us 
with a most significant truth, and also that it remorselessly sweeps 
away all basis of knowledge. Therefore we conclude that, though 
Herakleitos has given us a truth, it is an incomplete and 'one- 
sided truth. Let us notice next how the Eleatics stand in this 

About the inestimable value of the Eleatic contribution there 
can be no doubt. Granted that the phenomena of the material 
world are ever fleeting and vanishing and can never be known 
what of that ? The material world does not really exist : it is not 
there that we must seek for the object of knowledge, but in the 
eternally existent Unity. Thus they oppose the object of reason 

1 This sheer opposition of the ex- little value he might attach to opinion, 
istent unity to the non-existent plurality was bound to take account of it*, 
led Parmenides to divide his treatise That Parmenides was perfectly con- 
on Nature into two distinct portions, sistent in embracing the objects of 
dealing with Truth and Opinion. I Opinion in his account, I admit. But 
am not disposed to contest Dr Jack- none the less does his language justify 
son's affirmation that ' Parmenides, the statements in the text : he em- 
while he denied the real existence phatically affirms the non-existence of 
of plurality, recognised its apparent phenomena, and has no care to ex- 
existence, and consequently, however plain why they appear to exist. 


to the object of sensation. This is good, so far as it goes : it 
points to the line followed by Plato, who said, if material nature 
cannot be known, the inference is, not that knowledge is im- 
possible, but that .there is some immaterial existence, transcending 
the material, which is the true object of knowledge. But the 
further we examine the Eleatic solution, the more reason we shall 
see to be dissatisfied with it. First the problem of the material 
world is not answered but merely shelved by the negation of its 
existence. Here are we, a number of conscious intelligences, 
who perceive, or fancy we perceive, a nature which is not our- 
selves. What then are we, what is this nature, why do we seem to 
perceive it, and how can there be interaction between us and it ? 
A bald negation of matter will not satisfy these difficulties. Again, 
the Eleatics are bound to deny not merely the plurality of objects, 
but the plurality of subjects as well What then are these con- 
scious personalities, which seem so real and so separate, and 
which yet on Eleatic principles must, so far as their plurality and 
their separation is concerned, be an idle dream ? Secondly, if we 
ask Parmenides what is this eternally existent One, no satisfactory 
answer is forthcoming. On the one hand his description of the 
v OK ray is clogged with the forms of materiality : it is ' on all 
sides like unto the globe of a well-rounded sphere, everywhere in 
equipoise from the centre:' on the other, it is a mere aggregate of 
negations, and, as Plato has shown, an idle phantom of the 
imagination, an abstraction without content, whereof nothing can 
be predicated, which has no possible mode of existence, which 
cannot be spoken, conceived, or known. This is all Parmenides 
has to offer us for veritable existence. If it is true that on 
Herakleitean principles nothing can be known, it is equally true 
that on Eleatic principles there is nothing to know. 

The Hera- 8. How is it then that either of these most opposite theories 
JariEl^. leads to an equally hopeless deadlock? It is because each of 
tic theories them presents us with one side of a truth as if it were the whole. 
like^n* ^ or OPP 05 ^ 6 as th e doctrines of Herakleitos and Parmenides 
complete, may appear, they are in fact mutually complementary, and neither 
iallT*com- * s actua ^y **** except in conjunction with its rivaL Herakleitos 
plementary did well in affirming Motion ; but he forgot that, if Motion is to 
other the ^ there must likewise be Rest : for opposite requires opposite, 
fusion of So too Parmenides in denying plurality saw not that he thereby 
the work* abolished unity: for One and Many can exist only in mutual 
left to correlation each is meaningless without the other. Both must 



exist, or neither : the two are as inseparable as concave and 

Here then lies the radical difference between Parmenides and 
Plato. Parmenides said, Being is at rest, therefore Motion is not; 
Being is one, therefore Multitude is not ; Being is, therefore Not- 
being is not at all. Plato said, since there is Rest, there must be 
Motion ; since Being is one, it must also be many ; that Being 
may really be, Not-being must also be real. The chasm between 
the two sides must be bridged, the antinomy conciliated : Rest 
must agree with Motion, Unity with Multitude, Being with Not- 

But, it may be objected, is not this the very thing we just now 
said that the theory of Herakleitos achieved ? is not his great merit 
to have shown that each thing becomes, that is to say, it is at once 
and is not? True, Herakleitos shows this in the case of particulars : 
he exhibits 'is' and 'is not' combined in the processes of material 
nature. But as his universal result he gives us the negation 
of Being, just as Parmenides gives us the negation of Not-Being: 
each in the universal is one-sided. This Becoming, to which 
Herakleitos points in the material world, must be the symbol of a 
far profounder truth, of which Herakleitos never dreamed, which 
even Plato failed at first to realise. 

So then these are our results up to the present point. On the 
one side we have Multitude, Motion, Becoming; on the other 
Unity, Rest, Being. The two rival principles confront each other 
in sheer opposition, stiff, unyielding, impracticable. And till they 
can be reconciled, human thought is at a standstill. The partisans 
of either side waste their strength in idle wrangling that ends 
in nothing. And indeed, as we have them so far, these two 
principles are hopelessly conflicting: some all-powerful solvent 
must be found which shall be able to subdue them and hold them 
in coalescence. Now this very thing is the contribution of the 
last of the three great thinkers who are at present under considera- 
tion: he brought into the light, though he could not use, the 
medium wherein the fundamental antithesis of things was to 
be reconciled. 

9. Anaxagoras belongs to the Ionian school of thought and Anaxago- 
mainly concerned himself with physics. But such was the ras> 
originality of his genius and such the importance of his service to 
philosophy that he stands forth from the rest, as prominent 
and imposing a figure as Herakleitos himself. With his physical 



ras and 

theories we are not now concerned, since it is the development 
of Greek metaphysic alone which we are engaged in tracing. 
Anaxagoras distinguished himself by the postulation of Mind as 
an efficient cause: therefore it is that Aristotle says he came 
speaking the words of soberness after men that idly babbled. 
All was chaos, says Anaxagoras, till Mind came and ordered it, 
Now what is the meaning of this saying, as he understood it? 

First we must observe that the teaching of Anaxagoras is 
not antithetical to that of either Herakleitos or Parmenides, as 
these two are to each other: he takes up new ground altogether. 
His doctrine of vous is antagonistic to the opinions of Empedokles 
and of the atomists. Empedokles assumes Love and Hate as 
the causes of union and disunion. But herein he really introduces 
nothing new; he merely gives a poetical half-personification to the 
forces which are at work in nature. The atomists, conceiving 
their elemental bodies darting endlessly through infinite space, 
assigned as the cause of their collision TVXTJ or dvdyKrj, by which 
they meant an inevitable law operating without design, a blind 
force inherent in nature. This is what Anaxagoras gainsaid: to 
him effect required a cause, motion a movent. Now he observed 
that within his experience individual minds are the cause of 
action: what more likely then, he argued, than that the motions 
of nature as a whole are caused by a universal mind? It did not 
seem probable to him that a universe ordered as this is could be 
the chance product of blindly moving particles; he thought he saw 
in it evidence of intelligent design. He knew of but one form of 
intelligence the mind of living creatures, and chiefly of man. 
Mind then, he thought, must be the originator of order in the 
universe a mind transcending the human intelligence by so 
much as the operations of nature are mightier than the works 
of man. Thus then he postulated an efficient cause distinct from 
the visible nature which it governed. 

This leads us briefly to compare his attitude towards causation 
with that of Herakleitos and Parmenides. Herakleitos sought 
for no efficient cause. The impulse of transmutation is inherent 
in his elemental fire, and he looks no further. Why things 
are in perpetual mutation is a question which he does not 
profess to answer; it is enough, he would say, to have affirmed a 
principle that will account for the phenomena of the universe: it 
is neither necessary nor possible to supply a reason why the 
universe exists on this principle. And in fact every philosophy 


must at some point or other return the same reply. Herakleitos 
then conceives a motive force to exist in matter, but seeks not any 
ulterior cause thereof. 

The Eleatics simply abolished causation altogether. Since 
the One alone exists and changes never, it is the cause of nothing 
either to itself or to anything else. Causation in fact implies 
Becoming, and is thus excluded from the Eleatic system. No 
attempt is made to establish any relation of causality between the 
One and the Many, since the latter are absolutely negated. Nor 
does Parmenides in his treatise on the objects of Opinion make 
any effort to account for the apparent existence of the multitude 
of material particulars. 

Anaxagoras is thus the first with whom the conception of an 
efficient cause came to the front; and herein, however defective 
may have been his treatment of the subject, his claim of originality 
is indefeasible. 

10. The shortcomings of the Anaxagorean theory have been Deficien- 
dwelt upon both by Plato and by Aristotle. Plato found indeed ciesof An- 
much in Anaxagoras with which he could sympathise. His 
conception that Intelligence, as opposed to the atomistic 
dvdyKr], is the motive cause in nature, is after Plato's own heart. 
But after advancing so far, Anaxagoras stops short. Plato 
complains that he employs his Intelligence simply as a mechanical 
cause, as a source of energy, whereby he may have his cosmical 
system set in motion. But if, says Plato, the "PX 9 ? f l ^ e universe 
is an intelligent mind, this must necessarily be ever aiming at the 
best in its ordering of the universe no explanation can be 
adequate which is not thoroughly teleological. But Anaxagoras 
does not represent 'the best' as the cause why things are as they 
are : having assumed his vous as a motive power, he then, like all 
the rest, assigns only physical and subsidiary causes. The final 
cause has in fact no place in the philosophy of Anaxagoras. Nor 
does he ever regard Mind as the indwelling and quickening 
essence of Nature, far less as her substance and reality. On the 
contrary Mind is but an external motive power supplying the 
necessary impetus whereby the universe may be constructed 
on mechanical principles. Material phenomena stand over 
against it as an independent existence; they are ordered and 
controlled by Mind, but are not evolved from it, nor in any way 
conciliated with it. Thus we see how far Anaxagoras was from 
realising the immeasurable importance of the principle which he 


himself contributed to metaphysics, the conception of a 
causative mind. And so his philosophy ends in a dualism of 
the crudest type. 

Results. ii. And now we have lying before us the materials out of 

which, with the aid of a hint or two gained from Sokrates, Plato 
was to construct an idealistic philosophy. These materials consist 
of the three principles enunciated by the three great teachers whose 
views we have been considering 1 . These principles we may term 
by different names according to the mode of viewing them 
Motion, Rest, Life; Multiplicity, Unity, Thought; Becoming, 
Being, Soul: all these triads amount to the same. But however 
pregnant with truth these conceptions may prove to be, they 
are thus far impotent and sterile to the utmost. Each is presented 
to us in helpless isolation, incapable by itself of affording an 
explanation of things or a basis of knowledge. To bring them to 
light was only for men of genius, rightly to conciliate and 
coordinate them required the supreme genius of all. Like the bow 
of Odysseus, they await the hand of the master who alone can wield 
them. The One of Parmenides and the Many pf Herakleitos 
must be united in the Mind of Anaxagoras : that is to say, unity 
and plurality must be shown as two necessary and inseparable 
modes of soul's existence, before a philosophy can arise that 
is indeed worthy of the name. And it is very necessary to 
realise that to all appearance nothing could be more hopeless than 
the deadlock at which philosophical speculation had arrived: 
every way seemed to have been tried, and not one led to know- 

1 It may be thought strange that I between the Pythagorean theory of 
here make no mention of the Pytha- numbers and the Platonic theory of 
goreans. But the Pythagorean in- ideas a resemblance sufficient to in- 
fluence on Platonism has been grossly duce Aristotle to draw a comparison 
overrated. Far too much importance between them in the first book of the 
has often been attached to the state- metaphysics. But that the similarity 
ments of late and untrustworthy au- was merely external is plain from 
thorities, or to fragments attributed Aristotle's own account, and also that 
on most unsubstantial grounds to the significance to be attached to the 
Pythagorean writers. All that we Pythagorean numbers had been left 
can safely believe about Pythagorean in an obscurity which probably could 
philosophising is to be found, apart not have been cleared up by the 
from what Plato tells us, in Aristotle : authors of the theory. We may doubt- 
and from his statements we may less accept the verdict of Aristotle in 
pretty fairly infer that they had no a somewhat wider sense than he 
real metaphysical system at all. There meant by the words \lav dirXwi 
is indeed some superficial resemblance 


ledge. The natural result was that men despaired of attaining 
philosophic truth. 

12. Before we proceed further, perhaps a few words are Empedo- 
due to Empedokles. For he seems to have been dimly conscious 
of the necessity to amalgamate somehow or other the principles 
which Herakleitos and Parmenides had enunciated, the principles 
of Rest and Motion. But of any scientific method whereby this 
should be done he had not the most distant conception. His 
scheme is crudely physical, a mere mechanical juxtaposition of 
the two opposites /uis re SiaAXa^'s TC //.(.ye'vTwv : a real ontological 
fusion of them was utterly beyond his thought. Still, although 
he really contributes nothing to the solution of the problem 
concerning the One and Many, the fact that he did grope as it 
were in darkness after it is worthy of notice. 

13. The hopelessness of discovering any certain verity con- The 
cerning the nature of things found an expression in the sophistic ^p^i*]} 
movement This phase of Greek thought need not detain us Protago- 
long, since it did nothing directly for the advancement of meta- ras> 
physical inquiry. It is possible enough that the new turn which 
the sophists gave to men's thoughts may have done something 
to prepare the way for psychological introspection, and their 
studies in grammar and language can hardly have been other 
than beneficial to the nascent science of logic. From our present 
point of view however the only member of the profession that 
need be mentioned is Protagoras, who was probably the clearest 
and acutest thinker among them all, and who is interesting 
because Plato has associated his name with some of his own 
developments of the Herakleitean theory. The historical Pro- 
tagoras probably did little or nothing more in this direction than 
to popularise some of the teaching of Herakleitos and to give 
it a practical turn. What seems true to me, he said, is true for 
me ; what seems true to you is true for you : there is no absolute 
standard TTO.VTWV xp^arcuv /xeVpov avOpwrros. Therefore let us 
abandon all the endeavours to attain objective truth and turn 
our minds to those practical studies which really profit a man. 
The genuine interest of the doctrine of the relativity of knowledge, 
which Protagoras broached, is to be found in Plato's develop- 
ment of it ; and this will be considered in its proper place. So 
far as concerns our present study, we see in Protagoras only a 
striking representative of the reaction against the earlier dogmatic 


Sokrates. 14. Into the question whether Sokrates was a sophist or 

not we are not concerned to enter. And, deep as was the mark 
which he left on his time, we need not, since our inquiry deals 
with metaphysics, linger long with him : for whatever meta- 
physical importance Sokrates possesses is indirect and may be 
summed up in a very few words. With Sokrates the ultimate 
object of inquiry is, not the facts given in experience, but our 
judgments concerning them. Whereas the physicists had 
thought to attain knowledge by speculation upon the natural 
phenomena themselves, Sokrates, by proceeding inductively to 
a classification and definition of various groups of phenomena, 
substituted concepts for things as the object of cognition. By 
comparing a number of particulars which fall under the same 
class, we are enabled to strip off whatever accidental attributes 
any of them may possess and retain only what is common and 
essential to all. Thus we arrive at the concept or universal 
notion of the thing : and since this universal is the sole truth 
about the thing, so far as we are able to arrive at truth, it follows 
that only universals are the object of knowledge, so far as we 
are able to attain it. This Sokratic doctrine, that knowledge 
is of universals is the germ of the Platonic principle that know- 
ledge is of the ideas : and though, as we shall see, a too close 
adherence to it led Plato astray at first, it remained, since there 
was a Plato to develope it, a substantial contribution to philo- 
sophical research. 

Plato: two X 5- We are now in a position to appreciate the nature 

stages to of the work which lay before Plato and of the materials which 

guished in ne found ready to his hand. We have seen that philosophy, 

his treat- properly speaking, did not yet exist, though the incomposite 

the meta- elements of it were there ready for combination. Now it would 

physical be a very improbable supposition that Plato realised at first 

sight the full magnitude and the exact nature of the problem 

he had to encounter : and a careful study of his works leads, 

I believe, to the conclusion that such a supposition would be 

indefensible 1 . If then this is so if Plato first dealt with the 

question incompletely and with only a partial knowledge of what 

he had to do, but afterwards revised and partly remodelled his 

theory, after he had fully realised the nature of the problem 

1 For a full statement of the rea- denned phases of his thought, I must 
sons for holding that in Plato's dia- refer to Dr Jackson's essays on the 
logues are to be found two well- later theory of ideas. 


obviously our business is to investigate his mode of operation at 
both stages : we must see how he endeavoured in the first instance 
to escape from the philosophical scepticism which seemed to be 
the inevitable result of previous speculation, what were the defici- 
encies he found in the earlier form of his theory, and how he pro- 
posed to remedy its faults. We must see too how far his concep- 
tion of the nature of the problem may have altered in the interval 
between the earlier and the later phase of the ideal theory. 

To this end it will be necessary to examine Plato's meta- 
physical teaching as propounded in a group of dialogues, 
whereof the most important metaphysically are the Republic and 
Phaedo with which are in accordance the Phaednts, Symposium, 
Meno, and apparently the Cratylus and next the amended 
form of their teaching, as it appears in four great dialogues of the 
later period, Parmenides, Sophist, Philebus, Timaeus ; especially 
of course the last. The Sokratic dialogues may be dismissed 
as not bearing upon our question. 

1 6. Plato had thoroughly assimilated the physical teaching Plato 
of Herakleitos. He held no less strongly than the Ionian philo- 
sopher the utter instability and fluidity of material nature. We tean stand 
are not perhaps at liberty to allege the very emphatic language P omt> 
of the Theaetetus as evidence that this was his view in the earlier 
phase of his philosophy, with which we are at present dealing : 
but there is abundant proof within the limits of the Republic 
and Phaedo; see Republic 4796, Phaedo 788. He therefore, 
like Protagoras, was bound to draw his inference from the Hera- 
kleitean principle. The inference drawn by Protagoras was that 
speculation is idle, knowledge impossible. The inference drawn 
by Plato was that, since matter cannot be known, there must 
be some essence transcending matter, which alone is the object 
of knowledge. And furthermore this immaterial essence must 
be the cause and sole reality of material phenomena. Thus it 
was Plato's acceptance of the Herakleitean TrdvTa. pei, together 
with his refusal to infer from it the impossibility of knowledge, 
that led him to idealism. 

At this point the hint from Sokrates is worked in. What Thecontri- 
manner of immaterial essence is it which we are to seek as the gokrates 
object of knowledge ? Plato cordially adopted the Sokratic and the 

principle that universals alone can be known. But the Sokratic ^ as 
universal, being no substantial existence but merely a con- presented 
ception in our own mind, will not meet Plato's demand for a 


self-existent intelligible essence. Plato therefore hypostatises the 
Sokratic concept, declaring that every such concept is but our 
mental adumbration of an eternal and immutable idea. Thus 
in every class of material things we have an idea, whereof the 
particulars are the material images, and the concept which we 
form from observation of the particulars is our mental image 
of it. Immaterial essence then exists in the mode of eternal 
ideas or forms, one of which corresponds to every class, not only 
of concrete things, but of attributes and relations, of all things 
in fact which we call by the same class-name (Republic 5 96 A). 
The particulars exist, so far as they may be said to exist, through 
inherence of the ideas in them at least this is the way Plato 
usually puts it, though in Phaedo IOOD he declines to commit 
himself to a definition of the relation. These ideas are arranged 
in an ascending scale : lowest we have the ideas of concrete 
things, next those of abstract qualities, and finally the supreme 
Idea of the Good, which is the cause of existence to all the other 
ideas, and hence to material nature as well 

Now since, as we have seen, there is an idea corresponding 
to every group of particulars, we may note the following classes 
of ideas in the theory of the Republic: (i) the idea of the good; 

(2) ideas of qualities akin to the good, KCIAOV, Sucaiov and the like ; 

(3) ideas of natural objects, as man, horse ; (4) ideas of cncevaoTa, 
guch as beds or tables ; (5) ideas of relations, as equal, like ; 
(6) ideas of qualities antagonistic to good, aSucov, aurxpov, and 
so forth (Republic 476 A). 

Thus then we have the multitude of particulars falling under 
the above six classes deriving their existence from a number of 
causative immaterial essences, which in turn derive their own 
existence from one supreme essence, to wit, the idea of the good. 
The particulars themselves cannot be known, because they have 
no abiding existence : but by observation and classification of 
the particulars we may ascend from concept to concept until we 
attain to the apprehension of the auro dyaOw, whence we pass 
to the cognition of the other ideas. Thus Plato offers us a theory 
of knowledge which shall enable us to escape from metaphysical 
Predica- scepticism. But he also offers us in the theory of ideas his solution 
tion. Q a p ressm g logical difficulty the difficulty raised by Antisthenes 

and others as to the possibility of predication. The application 
of the ideal theory to this question is to be found in Phaedo 102 B. 
Predication signifies that the idea of the quality predicated is 


inherent in the subject whereof it is predicated : if we say 
' Sokrates is small,' we do not, as Antisthenes would have it, 
identify ' Sokrates ' and ' small,' but simply indicate that Sokrates 
partakes of the inherent idea of smallness. Thus we find in the 
doctrine of ideas on the metaphysical side a theory of knowledge, 
on the logical side a theory of predication. 

17. Such is Plato's first essay to solve the riddle bequeathed The 
him by his predecessors. Let us try to estimate the merits and 
deficiencies of his solution. Plato's 

The bold originality of Plato's theory is conspicuous at a ^eory. 
glance. In the first place, by proclaiming the Absolute Good as The source 
the sole source of existence, he identifies the ontological with the of Being 
ethical first principle, the formal with the final cause. Thus he Good the 
makes good the defect whereof he complained in the philosophy same, 
of Anaxagoras. For in the Platonic system a theory of being is 
most intimately bound up with a theory of final causes : ontology 
and teleology go hand in hand. Everything exists exactly in 
proportion as it fulfils the end of being as perfect as possible ; for 
just in that degree it participates in the idea of the good, which is 
the ultimate source of all existence. In just the same way he 
escapes from the utilitarian doctrine of Protagoras, by deducing 
his ethical teaching from the very fount of existence itself. Thus 
he finds one and the same cause for the existence of each thing 
and for its goodness. A good thing is not merely good relatively 
to us : as it exists by participating in the idea of the good, so it is 
good by resembling the idea ; the participation is the cause of the 
resemblance. Hence good is identified with existence, evil with 
non-existence; and, as I have said, each thing exists just in so far 
as it is good, and no further. 

Again in the ideal theory we for the first time reach a Concep- 
conception, and a very distinct conception, of immaterial existence. tio f j m ~ 
Perhaps we are a little liable to be backward in realising what a existence, 
huge stride in advance this was. I will venture to affirm that 
there is not one shadow of evidence in all that we possess of 
preplatonic utterances to show that any one of Plato's predecessors 
had ever so remote a notion of immateriality. Parmenides, 
who would gladly have welcomed idealism, is as much to seek as 
any one in his conception of it. And when we see such a man as 
Parmenides 'the reverend and awful' with all his 'noble profundity' 
hopelessly left behind, we may realise what an invincible genius it 
was that shook from its wings the materialistic bonds that clogged 

P. T. 2 



and think- 

works in 
is valid in 
tos, Par- 
and Anax- 

cies of the 

tos and 
des not 
yet con- 

both thought and speech and rose triumphant to the sphere of the 
'colourless and formless and intangible essence which none but 
reason the soul's pilot is permitted to behold.' 

And as the material and immaterial are for the first time 
distinguished, so between perception and thought is the line for 
the first time clearly drawn. Perception is the soul's activity as 
conditioned by her material environment ; thought her unfettered 
action according to her own nature : by the former she deals with 
the unsubstantial flux of phenomena, by the latter with the 
immutable ideas. 

Plato then recognises and already seeks to conciliate the 
conflicting principles of Herakleitos and Parmenides. He satisfies 
the demand of the Eleatics for a stable and uniform object of 
cognition, while he concedes to Herakleitos that in the material 
world all is becoming, and to Protagoras that of this material 
world there can be no knowledge nor objective truth. He also 
affirms with Anaxagoras that mind or soul is the only motive 
power in nature soul alone having her motion of herself is the 
cause of motion to all things else that are moved. Thus we see 
that Plato has taken up into his philosophy the great principles 
enounced by his forerunners and given them a significance and 
validity which they never had before. 

1 8. Now had Plato stopped short with the elaboration 
of the philosophical scheme of which an outline has just been 
given, his service to philosophy would doubtless have been 
immense and would still probably have exceeded the performance 
of any one man besides. But he does not stop short there nay, 
he is barely half way on his journey. We have now to consider 
what defects he discovered in the earlier form of his theory, and 
how he set about amending them. 

First we must observe that the conciliation of Herakleitos 
and Parmenides is only just begun. It is in fact clear that Plato, 
although recognising the truth inherent in each of the rival 
theories, had, when he wrote the Republic, no idea how completely 
interdependent were the two truths. For in the Republic his con- 
cern is, not how he may harmonise the Herakleitean and Eleatic 
principles as parts of one truth, but how, while satisfying the just 
claims of Becoming, he may establish a science of Being. He 
simply makes his escape from the Herakleitean world of Becoming 
into an Eleatic world of Being. And the world of Becoming 
is for him a mere superfluity, he does not recognise it as an 


inevitable concomitant of the world of Being. This amounts to 
saying that he does not yet recognise the Many as the inevitable 
counterpart to the One. 

Plato is in fact still too Eleatic. He does not roundly reject Pheno- 
the material world altogether: he sees that some explanation of it ^"^tely 
is necessary, and endeavours to explain it as deriving a kind of explained, 
dubious existence from the ideas. But this part of his theory was, 
as he himself seems conscious, quite vague and shadowy: the 
existence or appearance of material nature is left almost as great a 
mystery as ever. And, as we shall see, the nature of the ideas 
themselves is not satisfactorily made out, still less their relation to 
the avro dyaOov. 

Plato is also too Sokratic. He allows the Sokratic element Necessity 
in his system to carry weight which oversets the balance of the ^g^ 1112 
whole. We have seen that, owing to his admission of a hypostasis of ideas, 
corresponding to every Sokratic concept, we have among the 
denizens of the ideal world ideas of o-Kcuaora, of relations, and of 
things that are evil. In the first place the proposition that there 
exist in nature eternal types of artificial things seems very dubious 
metaphysic. Again, we have only to read the Phaedo in order to 
perceive what perplexities beset the ideas of relations'. Finally, 
the derivation from the supreme good of ideal evil is a difficulty 
exceeding in gravity all the rest. Clearly then the list of ideas 
needs revision. 

Moreover but scant justice is done to the Anaxagorean Principle 
principle of vovs. Plato had indeed supplied the teleological " O . w u ^" 
deficiency of Anaxagoras ; but we have no hint yet of soul as the 
substance and truth of all nature, spiritual and material, nor of the 
conciliation of unity and multitude as modes of soul's existence. 
Nor have we any adequate theory to explain the relation of 
particular souls to phenomena and to the ideas. Even the 
Herakleitean principle itself is not carried deep enough. It is not 
sufficient to recognise its universal validity in the world of matter. 
For if there be any truth in Becoming, this must lie deeper than 
the mere mutability of the material world: the changefulness of 
matter must be some expression of changeless truth. 

I conceive then we may expect to see in Plato's revised Summary. 

theory (i) a more drastic treatment of the problem concerning the 

One and the Many, (2) a searching inquiry into the relation 

between ideas and particulars, (3) a large expurgation of the list 

1 For instance Phaedo 102 B. 

2 2 


of ideas, (4) a theory of the relation of soul, universal and 
particular, to the universe. The answer to these problems may be 
latent in the earlier Platonism : but Plato has not yet realised the 
possibilities of his theory. By the time he has done this, we find 
most important modifications effected in it. Still they are but 
modifications: Plato's theory remains the theory of ideas, and 
none other, to the end. 

The Par- 19. The severe and searching criticism to which Plato sub- 
menides. j ec t s his own theory is begun in the Parmenides. This remarkable 
dialogue falls into two divisions of very unequal length. In the 
first part Parmenides criticises the earlier form of the theory of 
ideas ; in the second he applies himself to the investigation of the 
One, and of the consequences which ensue from the assumption 
either of its existence or of its non-existence. The discussion of 
the ideal theory in the first part turns upon the relation between 
idea and particulars. Sokrates offers several alternative suggestions 
as to the nature of this relation, all of which Parmenides shows to 
be subject to the same or similar objections. The purport of his 
criticisms maybe summed up as follows: (i) if particulars par- 
ticipate in the idea, each particular must contain either the whole 
idea or a part of it ; in the one case the idea exists as a number of 
separate wholes, in the other it is split up into fractions ; and, 
whichever alternative we accept, the unity of the idea is equally 
sacrificed : (2) we have the difficulty known as the rpiVos av- 
Opwiros if all things which are like one another are like by virtue 
of participation in the same idea, then, since idea and particulars 
resemble each other, they must do so by virtue of resembling 
some higher idea which comprehends both idea and particulars, 
and so forth ets aTreipov : (3) if the ideas are absolute substantial 
existences, there can be no relation between them and the world 
of particulars : ideas are related to ideas, particulars to particulars ; 
intelligences which apprehend ideas cannot apprehend particulars, 
and vice versa. It may be observed that the second objection is 
not aimed at the proposition that particulars resemble one another 
because they resemble the same idea, but against the hypothesis 
that because particulars in a given group resemble each other it is 
necessary to assume an idea corresponding to that group. 

Sokrates is unable to parry these attacks upon his theory, but 
in the second part of the dialogue Plato already prepares a way of 
escape. In the eight hypotheses comprised in this section of the 
dialogue Parmenides examines TO v, conceived in several different 


senses with the view of ascertaining what are the consequences 
both of the affirmation and of the negation of its existence to 
TO ev itself and to raXXa TOV evoV The result is that in some 
cases both, in other cases neither, of two strings of contradictory 
epithets can be predicated of TO tv or of TaXAo. If both series of 
epithets can be predicated, TO ev can be thought and known, if 
neither, it cannot be thought nor known 1 . Now in the latter 
category we find a conception of ev corresponding to the Eleatic 
One and to the idea of the earlier Platonism. 

The positive result of the Parmenides then is that the ideal 
theory must be so revised as to be delivered from the objections 
formulated in the first part : the second part points the direction 
which reform is to take. We must give up looking upon One and 
Many, like and unlike, and so forth, as irreconcilable opposites : 
we must conceive them as coexisting and mutually complementary. 
Thus is clearly struck the keynote of the later Platonism, the 
conciliation of contraries. In this way Plato now evinces his 
perfect consciousness of the necessity to harmonise the principles 
of his Ionian and Eleate forerunners, giving to each its due and 
equal share of importance. 

20. It will be convenient to take the Theaetetus next 2 . The The- 
This dialogue, starting from the question what is knowledge, a 
presents us with Plato's theory of perception a theory which 
entirely harmonises with the teaching of the Timaeus and in part 
supplements it. This theory Plato evolves by grafting the p-crpov 
ai>0p<D7ros of Protagoras upon the Trdvra pel of Herakleitos and 
developing both in his own way. As finally stated, it is as com- 
plete a doctrine of relativity as can well be conceived. What is 
given in our experience is no objective existence external to us ; 
between the percipient and the object are generated perception 
on the side of the percipient and a percept on the side of the 
object: e.g. on the part of the object the quality of whiteness, on 
the part of the subject the perception of white. And subject and 
object are inseparably correlated and exist only in mutual con- 
nexion subject cannot be percipient without object, nor object 

1 For a detailed investigation of form among the later dialogues ap- 
the intricate reasoning contained in pear to me irresistible, although parts 
this part of the dialogue see Dr Jack- of the dialogue have such decided lite- 
son's excellent paper in the Journal rary affinity to some of the earlier 
of Philology, vol. XI p. 287. series that I am disposed to entertain 

2 Dr Jackson's arguments for in- the supposition that what we possess 
eluding the Theaetetus in its present is a second and revised edition. 


generate a percept without subject. And subject as well as object 
is undergoing perpetual mutation : thus, since a change either of 
object or of subject singly involves a change in the perception, 
every perception is continually suffering a twofold alteration. 
Perception is therefore an ever-flowing stream, incessantly changing 
its character in correspondence with the changes in subject and 
in object. Nothing therefore can be more complete than the 
absolute instability of our sensuous perceptions. The importance 
of this theory will be better realised when we view it in the light 
of the Timaeus. 

The 21. More important than even the Parmenides is the 

Sop is . Sophist, one of the most profound and far-reaching of Plato's 
works. Plato starts with an endeavour to define the sophist, who, 
when accused of teaching what seems to be but is not knowledge, 
turns upon us, protesting the impossibility of predicating not- 
being : it is nonsense to say he teaches what is not, for TO p? oi/ 
can neither be thought nor uttered. Hereupon follows a truly 
masterly examination into the logic of being and not-being. The 
result is to show that either of the two, viewed in the abstract 
and apart from the other, is self-contradictory and unthinkable. 
And as being cannot exist without not-being, so unity also, if 
it is to have any intelligible existence, must contain in itself the 
element of plurality ; one is at the same time one and not-one, 
else it has no meaning. The failure to grasp this truth is the 
fundamental flaw in Eleatic metaphysics and consequently in the 
earlier ideal theory. It seems to me hardly open to doubt that 
the eiSwv <i'A.oi of 248 A represent Plato's own earlier views. The 
strictures he passes upon these ewfy are just those to which we 
have seen that the incomplete ideal theory is liable. He shows 
that the absolute immobility of the etSr/, to which all action and 
passion are denied, renders them nugatory as ontological prin- 
ciples they are empty and lifeless abstractions : yet, says Plato, 
a principle of Being must surely have life and thought 249 A. 
Next he takes five of the peyurra yen/, as he calls them, Rest, 
Motion, Same, Other, Being; and he demonstrates their inter- 
communicability, total or partial. The deduction from this is that 
such relations are not aura Ka.6' avra elSrj, or self-existing essences, 
but forms of predication, or, as we might say, categories. Thus 
the ideas of relations which gave us so much trouble are swept 
away; for were these yevr) substantial ideas, they could not thus 
be intercommunicable. Finally, the sophistic puzzle about p.rj ov 


is disposed of by resolving the notion of negation into that of 
difference : prj ov is simply erepov. 

The foregoing statement, brief and general as it is, will suffice, 
I think, for enabling us to estimate the extent of the contribution 
made by this dialogue towards building up the revised system. 
We have (i) the overthrow of the Eleatic conception of being 
and unity, which warns us that the ideal theory, if it would stand, 
must abandon its Eleatic character, (2) the most important 
declaration that Being must have life and thought this of course 
implies that the only Being is soul, and points to the universal 
soul of the Timaeus, (3) the deposition of relations from the rank 
of ideas, (4) the dissipation of all the fogs that had gathered 
about the notion of py ov, and the affirmation that there is a sense 
in which not-being exists. The Sophist, it may be observed, 
does for the logical side of Being and Not-being very much 
what the Timaeus does for the metaphysical side. There is much 
besides which is important and instructive in this dialogue, but 
I believe I have summed up its main contributions to the later 

22. The Sophist then has expunged relations from the Ideas of 
list of ideas. But there is another class of ideas included in the 
earlier system which is not expressly dealt with in any one of 
the later dialogues, and which it may be as well to mention here. 
We have seen reason to desire the abolition of ideas of 
Now so far as Plato's own statements are concerned, the abandon- 
ment of these ideas is only inferential. There is continual 
reference to such ideas in the earlier dialogues, but absolutely 
none in the later. This would perhaps sufficiently justify us in 
deducing the absence of o-Kcvao-ra in the revised list of ideas. 
But we have in addition the distinct testimony of Aristotle on this 
point. See metaphysics A iii 1070* 18 Sio 817 ov /ca/coj? o HAarcDv 
t(f>r) OTL dor) eoTiv OTTOO-O. <vo-, with which compare A ix 99 i b 6 
otov oiKi'a /cat SaKTuXio?, wv ov <a/nv eiSr; clvai. We know that in 
the earlier period Plato did recognise ideas of oaa and oWruXios : 
therefore Aristotle, in denying such ideas, must have the later 
period in his mind. In just the same way we read in metaphysics 
A ix 99<3 b 1 6 01 \>.\v TWJ/ irpos TI TTOIOVO~IV iScas, c5v ov </>ayu,ev cTvai 
naff avro ye'vos. Relations were undoubtedly included among 
the ideas of the earlier period ; yet, since, as we have seen, they 
are rejected in the later, Aristotle simply denies their existence 
without reference to the earlier view. 


Thus then, sweeping away all ideas of o-Kevaora, we are able 
to affirm that in Plato's later metaphysic there are ideas corre- 
sponding only to classes of particulars which are determined by 
nature, and none corresponding to artificial groups. 

The 23. In the Phikbus we come for the first time to construc- 

J ' tive ontology. We have the entire universe classed under four 
heads Limit, Trepas the Unlimited, avfipov the Limited, P.IKTOV 
the Cause of limitation, alria rrjs /uc<i>9. In this classification 
Trepas is form, as such ; aTmpov is matter, as such ; /UKTOV is 
matter defined by form; amo. -riys /u'o>s is the efficient cause 
which brings this information to pass : and this efficient cause 
is declared to be the universal Intelligence or voi)s. The objects 
of material nature are the result of a union between a principle 
of form and a formless substrate, the latter being indeterminate 
and ready to accept impartially any determination that is im- 
pressed upon it. It is not indeed correct to say that the aTrapov 
of the Phikbus is altogether formless : it is indeterminately qualified, 
and the Trepas does but define the quantity. For example, 
oVeipoi/ is 'hotter and colder,' that is, indeterminate in respect 
of temperature : the effect of the Trepas is to determine the tem- 
perature. The result of this determination is JUKTO'V, i.e. a 
substance possessing a definite degree of heat. The analysis 
of the material element given in the Phikbus therefore falls far 
short, as we shall see, of the analysis in the Timaeus. 

It is not however the Trepas itself which informs the aVeipov : 
Plato speaks of the informing element as Trepas ex ov or 7r P aTO s 
yeVva. This it is which enters into combination with matter, not 
the Trepas itself. What then is the Trepas l\ov ? I think we cannot 
err in identifying it with the ewriovra KCU eioWa of the Timaeus ; i. e. 
the forms which enter into the formless substrate, generating /xi/Aif- 
fiara of the ideas, and which vanish from thence again. The Trepas 
l^ov will then be the Aristotelian eTSos the form inherent in 
all qualified things and having no separate existence apart from 
things. Every sensible thing then consists of two elements, 
logically distinguishable but actually inseparable, form and matter. 
Nowhere in the material universe do we find form without matter 
or matter without form. Form then or limit, as manifested in 
material objects, must be carefully distinguished from the absolute 
Trepas itself, which does not enter into communion with matter : 
but every Trepas e^ov possesses the principle of limitation, which 
it imposes upon the oVeipov wherewith it is combined. 


But what is the Tre'pas itself? I think we are not in a position 
to answer this question until we have considered the Timaeus. 
But the nature of the reply has been indicated by a hint given 
us in the Parmentdes, viz. that the ideas are 7rapa8eiy/*aTa eo-rwra 
eV TTJ <frv<rei. For the Trepas <?x ov > by imposing limit, so far assimi- 
lates the oVeipov to the Tre'pas; consequently the /XIKTOV is the 
of the Trepas as irapdSfiyfjLa. We may therefore regard the 
as the ideal type to which the particulars approximate. Thus 
we derive from the Philebus a hint of the paradeigmatic character 
of the idea, which assumes its full prominence in the Timaeus. 
This part of the theory however cannot be adequately dealt with 
until we have examined the latter dialogue. 

The most important metaphysical results of the Philebus may 
thus, I conceive, be enumerated : (i) the assertion of universal 
mind as the efficient cause, and as the source of particular minds, 

(2) the distinction of the formal and material element in things, 

(3) the theory of matter as such, rudimentary as it is, which is 
given us in the aTretpov. 

24. Besides this, the Philebus enables us to make another ideas of 

very important deduction from the number of ideas. We now f vl1 no , 
. ..... longer ad- 

regard the particular as resembling the idea in virtue of its in- mined. 

formation by the Trepas f-\ov. And in so far as this information is 
complete the particular is a satisfactory copy of the idea. Now 
let us represent any class of particulars or /xi/cra by the area of a 
circle. The centre of this circle would be marked by the par- 
ticular, if such could be found, which is a perfect material copy of 
the idea that particular in which the formal and material elements 
are blended in exactly the right way. Let us suppose the other 
particulars to be denoted by various points within the circle in 
every direction at different distances from the centre. Now in so 
far as the particulars approximate to the centre, they are like the 
idea, and by virtue of their common resemblance to the idea they 
resemble each other. Such particulars then as resemble each 
other because of their common resemblance to the idea are called 
by the class-name appropriate to the idea. But it is clear that 
particulars may also resemble each other because of a similar 
divergence from the idea: we may have a number of them 
clustering round a point within our circle far remote from the 
centre and therefore very imperfectly representing the idea. Such 
particulars have a class-name not derived from the idea, but de- 
noting a similar divergence from the idea. A word denoting 



made in 
the four 
on the 
sic of the 

divergence from the idea denotes evil. Therefore there are class- 
names of evil things ; but such class-names do not presuppose a 
corresponding idea : they simply indicate that the particulars com- 
prehended by them fall short of the idea in a similar manner. 

For example : a human being who should exactly represent 
the avro o tvnv dv0pu)7ros would be perfectly beautiful and per- 
fectly healthy. But in fact humanity is sometimes afflicted with 
deformity and sickness: we have accordingly class-names for these 
evils. But one who is deformed or sick fails, to the extent of his 
sickness or deformity, in representing the ideal type : these class- 
names then do not represent an idea but a certain falling-off from 
the idea. Hence we have no idea of fever, because fever is only 
a mode of deviation from the type ' ; and the same is true of all 
other imperfections. Thus at one stroke we are rid of all ideas 
of evil. 

25. Let us now pause to consider how far these four dialogues 
have carried us in the work of reconstruction, and how much awaits 

In the first place, the elimination of spurious ideas is fully 
achieved. The Sophist frees us from ideas of relations, the Philebus 
from those of evil ; while o-KeuaoTa are rejected on the strength of 
Aristotle's testimony, confirmed by the total absence of reference 
to them in the later dialogues : accordingly we have now ideas 
corresponding only to classes naturally determined. It seems to 
me manifest that ideas of qualities must also be banished from 
the later Platonism ; and on this point too we have the negative 
evidence that they are never mentioned in the later dialogues; 
but there is no direct statement respecting them. 

We have also a clear recognition, especially prominent in the 
Parmenides, of the indissoluble partnership between One and 
Many, Rest and Motion, Being and Not-being. The necessity for 
reconciling these apparent opposites is distinctly laid down, though 
the conciliation is not yet worked out. The acknowledgement 
of soul as the one existence, from which all finite souls are de- 
rived, and as the one efficient cause is a notable advance, as is 
also the theory of the Theaetetus concerning the relation between 
particular souls and material nature. And finally we have the 
analysis of OVTO. into their formal and material elements, and the 
still immature conception of matter as a potentiality. 

1 In the Phaedo, on the contrary, we definitely have an idea of fever : see 
105 c. 


Moreover, putting the Theaetetus and Philebus together, we 
obtain a result of peculiar importance. From the latter we learn 
that finite souls are derived from the universal soul, from the 
former that material objects are but the perceptions of finite 
souls. The conclusion is inevitable, since the objects which con- 
stitute material nature do not exist outside the percipient souls, 
and since these percipient souls are part of the universal soul, 
that material nature herself is a phase of the universal soul, which 
is thus the sum total of existence. Thus we have the plainest 
possible indication of the ontological theory which is set forth 
in the Timaeus ; though, as usual, Plato has not stated this 
doctrine in so many words, but left us to draw the only possible 
inference from his language. 

26. Yet great as is the progress that has been made, even Deficien- 

more remains to be achieved : and it is to the Timaeus that we " es stl11 to 

be sup- 
must look for fulfilment. plied. 

Although the fundamental problem of the One and the Many 
is now fairly faced, the solution is not yet worked out. Nor is 
the relation between the universal efficient Intelligence and the 
world of matter clearly established : the failure of Anaxagoras in 
this regard remains still unremedied. Also (what is the same 
thing viewed in another way) the relation between ideas and par- 
ticulars is left undefined. Nay, in this respect we seem yet worse 
off than we were in the Republic. For the old unification, such 
as it was, has disappeared, and no new one has taken its place. 
Formerly we were content to say that the particulars participated 
in the ideas, and from the ideas derived their existence. But now 
this consolation is denied us. We have the ideas entirely separate 
from the particulars, as types fixed in nature ; and no explanation 
is offered as to how material nature came to exist, or seem to exist, 
over against them. We have the 'subjective idealism' of the 
Theaetetus^ and that is all. In fact, while we vindicate the idea as 
a unity, we seem to sacrifice it as a cause. 

Furthermore we desiderate a clearer account of the relation 
between the supreme idea and the inferior ideas, and also between 
limited intelligences and the infinite intelligence : nor can we 
be satisfied without a much more thorough investigation into the 
nature of materiality. And the answers to all these questions 
must be capable of being duly subordinated to one compre- 
hensive system. 

Now if the Timaeus supplies in any reasonable degree a solution 



The cen- 
tral meta- 
of the 

of the aforesaid problems, it seems to me that no more need be 
said about the importance of the dialogue. 

27. In the Ttmaeus Plato has given us his ontological 
scheme in the form of a highly mystical allegory. I propose in 
the first place to give a general statement of what I conceive 
to be the metaphysical interpretation of this allegory, reserving 
various special points for after consideration 1 . The ontological 
teaching of this dialogue, though abounding in special difficulties, 
can in my belief be very clearly apprehended, if we but view it in 
the light afforded us by the other writings of this period ; on which 
in turn it sheds an equal illumination. 

In the Timaeus then the universe is conceived as the self- 
evolution of absolute thought. There is no more a distinction 
between mind and matter, for all is mind. All that exists is the 
self-moved differentiation of the one absolute thought, which is 
the same as the Idea of the Good. For the Idea of the Good is 
Being, and the source of it ; and from the Sophist we have learnt 
that Being is Mind. And from the Parmenides we have learnt 
that Being which is truly existent must be existent in two modes : 
it must be one and it must be many. For since One has meaning 
only when contrasted with Many, Being, forasmuch as it is One, 
demands that Many shall be also. But since Being alone exists, 
Being must itself be that Many. Again, Being is the same with 
itself; but Same has no meaning except as correlated with Other; 
so Being must also be Other. Once more, Being is at rest ; Rest 
requires its opposite, Motion; therefore Being is also in motion. 
Seeing then that Being is All, it is both one and many, both same 
and other, both at rest and in motion : it is the synthesis of every 
antithesis. The material universe is Nature manifesting herself in 
the form of Other : it is the one changeless thought in the form of 
mutable multitude. Thus does dualism vanish in the final identi- 
fication of thought and its object : subject and object are but 
different sides of the same thing. Thought must think: and since 
Thought alone exists, it can but think itself 8 . 

1 Considering that the exposition 
here offered deals with matters of 
much controversy, my statement may 
be thought unduly categorical and 
dogmatic. In reply I would urge 
that difficulties of interpretation and 
the manner in which Plato's meaning 
comes out are pretty copiously dis- 

cussed in the commentary. At pre- 
sent I am aiming at making my story as 
clear as possible, to which end I have 
given results rather than processes. 
What I conceive to be the justification 
for the views advanced will, I hope, 
appear in the course of my exposition. 
2 It is easy to see that Aristotle's 


Yet, though matter is thus resolved into a mode of spirit, it 
is not therefore negated. It is no longer contemptuously ignored 
or dismissed with a metaphor. Matter has its proper place in 
the order of the universe and a certain reality of its own. Though 
it has no substantial being, it has a meaning. For Nature, seeing 
that she is a living soul, evolves herself after a fixed inevitable 
design, in which all existence, visible and invisible, finds its rightful 
sphere and has its appointed part to play in the harmony of the 
universe. But there is more to be said ere we can enter upon 
the nature of matter. 

28. The universal mind, we say, must exist in the form of Pluralisa- 
plurality as well as in the form of unity. How does this come t] 
to pass ? The hint for our guidance is to be found in the Phi- mind in 
lebus, where we learn that, as the elements which compose our of^jjj 
bodies are fragments of the elements which compose the universe, existences, 
so our souls are fragments, as it were, of the universal soul. Hence 
we see how the one universal intelligence exists in the mode of 
plurality : it differentiates itself into a number of finite intelli- 
gences, and so, without ceasing to be one, becomes many. These 
limited personalities are of diverse orders, ranging through all 
degrees of intellectual and conscious life ; those that are nearest 
the absolute mind, if I may use the phrase, possessing the purest 
intelligence, which fades into deeper and deeper obscurity in 
the ranks that are more remote. First stands the intelligence 
of gods, which enjoys in the highest degree the power of pure 
unfettered thought ; next comes the human race, possessing an 
inferior but still potent faculty of reason. Then as we go down 
the scale of animate beings, we see limitation fast closing in 
upon them intelligence grows ever feebler and sensation ever 
in proportion stronger, until, passing beyond the forms in which 
sensation appears to reign alone, we come in the lowest organisms 
of animal and vegetable life to beings wherein sensation itself 
seems to have sunk to some dormant state below the level of 
consciousness. Yet all these forms of life, from the triumphant 
intellect of a god to the green scum that gathers on a stagnant 
pool, are modes of one universal all-pervading Life. Reason may 
degenerate to sensation, sensation to a mere faculty of growth ; 

vb-r\<j(S vorjffews is directly derived from ceeded on Plato's lines in conceiving 

the Timaeus: though his very frag- of material nature as one mode of the 

mentary utterances on this subject eternal thought, 
leave us in doubt how far he had pro- 


but all living things are manifestations of the one intelligence ex- 
panding in ever remoter circles through the breadth and depth 
of the universe : each one is a finite mode of the infinite a 
mould, so to speak, in which the omnipresent vital essence is 
for ever shaping itself. 

The 29. So far as the theory has yet taken us, we have on the 

fatter and one ^ an( ^ the universal soul, on the other finite existences into 

its place which the universal evolves itself. Matter has not yet made 

Platonic * ts a PP earance i n our system. But Plato is not wanting in an 

ontology, account of matter; and here the theory of perception in the 

Theaetetus will come to our aid. 

In the pluralisation of universal soul finite souls attain to a 
separate and independent consciousness. But for this indepen- 
dent consciousness every soul has to pay a fixed price. The 
price is limitation, and the condition of limitation is subjection to 
the laws of what we know as time and space. But the degree 
of subjection varies in different orders of existence ; and in 
the higher forms is tempered with no mean heritage of free- 
dom. The object of cognition for finite souls is truth as it is 
in the universal soul. Now intelligences of the higher orders have 
two modes of apprehending this universal truth one direct, by 
means of the reason, one symbolical, by means of the senses. 
And when we speak of soul acting by the reason and through 
the senses, we mean by these phrases that in the one case the 
soul is exercising the proper activity of her own nature, qua 
soul ; in the other that she is acting under the conditions of 
her limitation, qua finite soul : which conditions we saw were 
time and space. Now the direct apprehension, which we call 
reasoning, exists to any considerable degree only in gods and 
in the human race. In the inferior forms of animation the direct 
mode grows ever feebler, until, so far as we can tell, it disappears 
altogether, leaving the symbolical mode of sensuous perception 
alone remaining. Time and space then are the peculiar adjuncts 
of particular existence, and material objects, i.e. sensuous percep- 
tions, are phenomena of time and space in other words sym- 
bolical apprehensions of universal truth under the form of time 
and space. Thus the material universe is, as it were, a luminous 
symbol-embroidered veil which hangs for ever between finite exist- 
ences and the Infinite, as a consequence of the evolution of one out 
of the other. And none but the highest of finite intelligences 
may lift a corner of this veil and behold aught that is behind it. 


But we must beware of fancying that this material nature has 
any independent existence of its own, apart from the percipient 
it has none 1 . All our perceptions exist in our own minds and 
nowhere else; the only existence outside particular souls is the 
universal soul. Material nature is but the refraction of the single 
existent unity through the medium of finite intelligences : each 
separate soul is, as it were, a prism by which the white light of 
pure being is broken up into a many-coloured spectacle of ever- 
changing hues. Matter is mind viewed indirectly. Yet this does 
not mean the negation of matter : matter has a true reality in our 
perceptions; for these perceptions are real, though indirect, 
apprehensions of the universal. And since universal Nature 
evolves herself according to some fixed law and order, there is a 
certain stability about our perceptions, and a general agreement 
between the perceptions of beings belonging to the same rank. 
But none the less are we bound to affirm that matter has no 
separate existence outside the percipient soul. Such objectivity 
as it possesses amounts to this : it is the same eternal essence 
which is thus symbolically apprehended by all finite intelligences. 
Mind is the universe, and beside Mind is there nothing. 

30. But all this time what has become of the ideas ? So The ideal 
far they have not even been mentioned in our exposition. Yet |j| eo ^ m 
their existence is most strenuously upheld in this dialogue, and maeus. 
therefore their place in the theory must be determined. Our duty 
then plainly is to search the ontology of the Timaeus for the ideas. 

It is notable that in the Timaeus we hear less than usual of 
the plurality of ideas ; nor is that surprising, when so much stress 
is laid upon a comparatively neglected principle, the unity of the 
Idea. But the plurality of ideas is not only reaffirmed in the 
most explicit language, it is a metaphysical principle especially 
characteristic of the dialogue. The paradeigmatic aspect of the 
ideas now comes into marked prominence : they are the eternal 

1 The teaching of the Theaetetus, to it. But this is no real objection, 
viewed in relation with the space- For if Soul is the sum-total of exist- 
theory of the Timaeus, seems to me ence, all that exists independently of 
perfectly conclusive on this point. It finite soul is the universal soul. There- 
may indeed be argued that only the fore, so far as the object exists outside 
afoOfja-is is purely subjective, accord- the subject, that object is the uni- 
ing to the theory of the Theaetetus; versal soul itself : that is, as said above, 
the object generating the alcOtirbv, our sense-perceptions are perceptions 
although existing in correlation with of the universal under the condition of 
the subject, has an existence external space. 


and immaterial types on which all that is material is modelled. 
'Alles Vergangliche ist nur ein Gleichniss' might be adopted as 
the motto of the Timaeus. 

In order to make clear the position of the ideas in Plato's 
maturest ontology, I fear I must to some extent repeat what has 
been said in the preceding section. The supreme idea, auVo 
dyaOov, we have identified with universal vovs, for which TO oV, 
TO cv, and TO irav are synonyms. This universal thought then 
realises itself by pluralisation in the form of finite intelligences. 
These intelligences possess a certain mode of apprehending the 
universal, which we term sensuous perception. By means of such 
perception true Being cannot be apprehended as it is in itself; 
what is apprehended is a multitude of symbols which shadow 
forth the reality of existence, and which constitute the only mode 
in which such existence can present itself to the senses. These 
symbols or likenesses we call material objects, which come to be 
in space, and processes, which take place in time. They have no 
substantial existence, but are subjective affections of particular 
intelligences : what is true in them is not the representation in 
space and time, but the reality of existence which they symbolise. 
But these symbols do not arise at random nor assume arbitrary 
forms. Since the evolution of absolute thought is not arbitrary, 
but follows the necessary and immutable law of its own nature, it 
may be inferred that all finite intelligences of the same rank have, 
within a certain margin, similar perceptions. Now the unity of 
Being presents itself to diverse kinds of sense and to each sense 
in manifold wise. Each of these presentations is the eiKuv, or 
image, of which that unity is the 7rapa8eiy/za, or original ; and the 
accuracy of the image varies according to the clearness of the 
presentation. A perfectly clear presentation is a perfect symbol 
of the truth, the CIKWV exactly reflects the : a dimmer 
presentation is a more imperfect image. The 7rapa'8y/na then is 
the perfect type, to which every particular more or less approxi- 
mates. Now were this approximation quite successfully accom- 
plished, in every class the particulars, since they all exactly reflected 
the type, would be all exactly alike. Deviations from the type 
and consequent dissimilarities among the particulars are due to 
the imperfect degree in which our senses are capable of appre- 
hending, even in this indirect way, the eternal type. 

Since then we see that different classes of material phenomena 
are so many different forms in which the eternal unity presents 


itself to the senses, it follows that the types or ideas corresponding 
to such classes are simply determinations of the universal essence 
or avro O.JO.BOV itself: that is to say, each idea is the idea of the 
good specialised in some particular mode or form blueness is 
the mode in which the good reveals itself to the faculty which 
perceives blue. So then everything in nature which we hear or 
see or perceive by any perception means the idea of the good. 
There is thus nothing partial or fractional in Nature : she reveals 
herself to us one and entire in each of her manifestations. Di- 
versity is of us. We are all beholding the same truth with a 
variety of organs : it is as though we looked at a flame through a 
many-faceted crystal, which repeats it on every surface. And 
since the unity is eternal and inexhaustible, inexhaustible is the 
number of forms in which it may present itself to every 

31. Furthermore, if it were in the nature of finite intelligences Evil 
to receive through the senses accurate symbols of the good, all pre senta- 
things must be perfectly fair; foulness is due to defect of pre- tionofthe 
sentation. Hence there can be no ideas of ugliness and dirt, of 
injustice and evil : all these things arise from failure in representing 
the idea and consequent failure in existence. For in all things 
that exist there must be a certain degree of good, else they could 
not exist at all : even in visible objects that are most hideous 
there is some fairness; the likeness to the type is there, however 
marred and scarce discernible. Evil is nothing positive, it is but 
defect of existence; and this defect is due to the limitations of 
finite intelligence and of finite modes of being. 

To sum up : the one universal Thought evolves itself into a Summary, 
multitude of finite intelligences, which are so constituted as to 
apprehend not only by pure reason, but also by what we call the 
senses, with all their attendant subjective phenomena of time and 
space. These sensible phenomena group themselves into a multi- 
tude of kinds, each kind representing or symbolising the universal 
Thought in some determinate aspect. It is the Universal itself 
which in each of these aspects constitutes an idea or type, im- 
material and eternal, whereof phenomena are the material and 
temporal representations : the phenomena do in fact more or less 
faithfully express the timeless and spaceless in terms of space and 
time. Thus the auro dyaOov is the ideas, and the ideas are the 
phenomena, which are merely a mode of their manifestation to 
finite intelligence. The whole universe, then, ideal and material, 
P. T. 3 



The plu- 
rality of 
ideas a 
of the plu- 
of univer- 

raised: are 
there ideas 
of fa 

is seen to be a single Unity manifesting itself in diversity. Such I 
conceive to be the theory of ideas in its final form. 

32. One thing more should be added. It is plain from 
what has been said, that the plurality of ideas is the inevitable 
consequence of the pluralisation of absolute thought into finite 
minds. For the various classes of phenomena, to which we need 
corresponding ideas, are part of our consciousness as limited 
beings, and arise from our limitation. It is because universal 
Being is presented to us in this sensuous manner, in groups of 
material phenomena, that universal Being must determine itself 
into types of such phenomena. If we were not constituted so as 
to see roses, there would be no idea of roses. We should then 
be contemplating the eternal unity directly, as it is in itself : 
differentiation would neither be necessary nor possible. But 
this may not be, for pluralisation without limitation is incon- 
ceivable : and limitation to us involves space and time. There- 
fore paradoxical, nay profane as the statement would have 
appeared in the days of the Republic ideas can no more 
exist without particulars than particulars can exist without the 

33. Before we leave this subject, a question suggests itself 
to which it is perhaps impossible to return a decisive answer. 
We have seen that in the mature Platonism ideas are restricted 
to classes which are naturally determined. Ought we to go a step 
further and confine the ideas to classes of living things? It 
appears to me that there are good grounds for an affirmative 
answer ; but Plato has left his intention uncertain. 

All the ideas mentioned in the Timaeus, with the exception 
of one passage, are ideas of <5a a term which includes plants 
as well as animals. The exceptional passage is 516, where we 
hear of irvp auro <' cavrou and, by implication, of ideas of the 
other three elements also. Now that ideas should be confined 
to <3a seems reasonable on the following grounds. The supreme 
idea is expressed in the Timaeus as auro o TTI <3ov, and this 
includes all other ideas that exist. If then the supreme universal 
idea is <3ov, it would seem that the more special ideas, which 
are subordinate to it, ought to be o>a likewise. Or let us put 
it in another way. We have been led to identify the supreme 
intelligence with the auro dyaOov. We have said too that this 
supreme intelligence or idea pluralises itself into finite existences, 
and that it determines itself into special ideas. Now do not this 


pluralisation and this determination constitute one act? Is not 
the evolution of Mind in the form of human minds the same 
process as the determination of the idea of Man ? If this be so, 
then, since Mind can only pluralise itself in the form of living 
beings, it can only determine itself into ideas of t<aa. Aristotle 1 
indeed seems to account wvp, <nxp, KffaXij, as natural classes 
whereof there are ideas : but I very much doubt whether Plato 
would have admitted ideas of these. The idea of Star involves 
in its material representation Trvp, even as the idea of Man 
involves in its material representation crap and Kf<f>aXij: but 
it in no way requires the existence of any ideas of these things. 

There is however the passage 516, in which an idea of fire 
is distinctly mentioned. I think it probable that this passage 
ought not to be pressed too hard. After he has been speaking 
of the four material elements, Plato raises the question whether 
these material substances alone are existent, or whether there 
is such a thing as immaterial essence : and the four elements 
being in possession of the stage, it naturally occurs to contrast 
them with ideal types of the elements. I do not think we are 
forced to conclude from this that Plato deliberately meant to 
postulate such ideas. If this explanation be not admitted, I 
should say that we have in this passage a relic of the older theory, 
which Plato ought to have eliminated, and would have eliminated, 
had his attention been drawn to the subject. Practically then 
I believe that we should regard the ideal world as confined to 
ideas of <3a. 

34. The foregoing account of the metaphysical teaching Summary 
contained in the Timaeus suffices, I think, to show that in this ofres ' 
dialogue, taken in conjunction with the other later writings, 
Plato does offer us a solution of the problems enumerated in 
26 as yet unsolved. We now have his theory (i) as to the 
relation of the efficient mind to material nature, the latter arising 
from the pluralisation of the former; (2) the relation of the 
supreme idea to the other ideas, which are determinations of it; 
(3) the relation of ideas and particulars that the particular 
is the symbolical presentation of the idea to limited intelligence 
under the conditions of space and time; (4) the relation between 
the supreme intelligence and the finite intelligences, into which 
it differentiates itself; (5) the relation between the finite intelli- 
gence and material nature, involving an account of matter itself; 
1 Metaphysics A iii 1070* 19. 



and (6) we have the fundamental antithesis of One and Many 
treated with satisfying completeness. Plato is indeed far more 
profoundly Herakleitean than Herakleitos himself. Not content, 
like the elder philosopher, with recognising the antithesis of ov 
and fir) ov as manifested in the world of matter, he shows that 
this is but the visible symbol of the same antithesis existing 
in the immaterial realm. True Being itself is One and Many, is 
Same and Other. Were there not a sense in which we could say 
that Being is not, there were no sense in which we could say that 
it verily is. Matter in its mobility, as in all besides, is a likeness 
of the eternal and changeless type. 

It now remains to deal with some special features of the 
dialogue, and to discuss certain objections and difficulties which 
may seem to us to threaten our interpretation. 

Difficulty 35. The form which Plato gives to his thoughts in this 

fromYhe dialogue has greatly multiplied labour to his interpreters. For all 
allegorical his clearness of thought and lucidity of style Plato is always 
^ e most difficult of authors: and in the Timaeus we have the 
added difficulty of an allegorical strain pervading the whole 
exposition of an ontological theory in itself sufficiently abstruse. 
And if we would rightly comprehend the doctrine, we must of 
course interpret the allegory aright. Plato is the most imagi- 
native writer produced by the most imaginative of nations ; and 
he insists on a certain share of imagination in those who would 
understand him. A blind faithfulness to the letter in this dialogue 
would lead to a most woful perversion of the spirit. Here, more 
than in any of Plato's other writings, the conceptions of his reason 
are instantly decked in the most vivid colours by his poetic fancy. 
And of all poetical devices none is dearer to Plato than personi- 
fication. Hence it is that he represents processes of pure thought, 
which are out of all relation to time and space, as histories 
or legends, as a series of events succeeding one another in time. 
In conceiving the laws and relations of mind and matter, the 
whole thing rises up before his imagination as a grand spectacle, a 
procession of mighty events passing one by one before him. 
First he sees the unity of absolute thought, personified as a wise 
and beneficent creator, compounding after some mysterious law 
the soul that shall inform this nascent universe: next he descries 
a doubtful and dreamlike shadow, formless and void, which 
under the creator's influence, gradually shapes itself into visible 
existence and is interfused with the world-soul which controls 


and orders it, wherewith it forms a harmonious whole, a perfect 
sphere, a rational divine and everlasting being. Next within this 
universe arise other divine beings, shining with fire and in their 
appointed orbits circling, which measure the flight of time and 
make light in the world. Finally, the creator commits to these 
gods, who are the work of his hands, the creation of all living 
things that are mortal : for whom they frame material bodies and 
quicken them with the immortal essence which they receive from 
the creator. 

All this is pure poetry, on which Plato has lavished all the 
richness of imagery and splendour of language at his command. 
But beneath the veil of poetry lies a depth of philosophical 
meaning which we must do what in us lies to bring to light. 
And there is not a single detail in the allegory which it will 
be safe to neglect. For Plato has his imagination, even at its 
wildest flight, perfectly under control : the dithyrambs of the 
Timaeus are as severely logical as the plain prose of the Parme- 

Most of the details of this myth are considered in the notes as 
they arise; but there are one or two of its chief features which 
must be examined here. 

36. The central figure in what may be called Plato's cos- How is the 
mological epic is the o^/uoupyos, or Artificer of the universe. It to^^im. * 
is evidently of the first importance to determine whether Plato derstood? 
intends this part of his story to be taken literally; and if not, how 
his language is to be interpreted. 

The opinions which have been propounded on this subject 
may fairly be arranged under three heads. 

According to the first view the S^/xtovpyo? is a personal God, (0 is he a 
external to the universe and actually prior to the ideas : to GocT^ex- 

this appertains one form of the opinion that the ideas are ' the temal to 
e .^ , , the uni- 

thoughts of God.' verse and 

There is but one passage in all Plato's works which can give P". r to 
the slightest apparent colour to the theory that the ideas are 
in any sense created or caused by God. This is in Repttblic 
597 B D, where God is described as the <vrovpyos of the ideal 
bed. But a little examination will show that no stress can really 
be laid upon this. For to the three beds, the ideal, the particular, 
and the painted, Plato has to assign three makers. For the two 
latter we have the carpenter and the artist: then, if the series 
is to be completed, who could possibly be named as the creator 


of the ideal bed save God? And the series must needs be com- 
pleted to attain Plato's immediate purpose, in order that the 
carpenter and the artist may be placed in their proper order 
of merit. The postulation of God as the creator of the ideal bed 
is merely an expedient designed to serve a temporary end, not 
a principle of the Platonic philosophy. If we take any other 
view we bring the passage into direct conflict with the statement 
beginning 508 E, where it is declared in the plainest language that 
the Idea of the Good is the cause of all existence whatsoever. 
Moreover to maintain that the ideas are the thoughts of a personal 
God is utterly to ignore Plato's emphatic and constantly iterated 
affirmation of the self-existent substantiality of the ideas. Even 
could these declarations be explained away, we should have 
to face Aristotle's criticism of the ideal theory nay, Plato's own 
criticism in the Parmenides ; neither of which would have any 
meaning were not the ideas independent essences : the argument 
of the T/HTOS avOptoiros, for instance, would be irrelevant. The 
hypothesis then that a personal God is in any sense the cause 
of the ideas must be dismissed as incompatible with Platonic 

(2) is he a 37. Secondly, it is held that the Syj/xiovpyos is a personal 
creator* creator, external to the universe and to the ideas, on the model of 
external to which he fashioned material nature. This view demands the 
verse'and most careful consideration, since it is the literal statement of the 
to the Timaeus. But it will prove, I think, to be totally untenable. In 
the first place it makes Plato offer us, instead of an ontological 
theory, a theological dogma: it is an evasion, not a solution of the 
problem. For we are asked to suppose that after constructing an 
elaborate ontology which is to unfold the secret of nature, Plato 
suddenly cuts the knot with a hypothesis which has absolutely no 
connexion with his ontology. Again, however much opinions 
may differ as to the extent of Plato's success in eliminating 
dualism, it will hardly be disputed that to do this was his aim. 
But here we have not merely dualism, but a triad : the ideas, the 
creator, and matter. All these are distinct and independent, nor is 
there any evolution of one from another. Can we seriously 
believe that Plato's speculations ended in this? And there remain 
yet more cogent considerations. In this story we find the S^/xioup- 
yos represented as creating tyvxv- But "A^X 1 ?* we know, is eternal. 
Her creation must then be purely mythical: and if the creation, 
surely the creator also. Or if not, since i/'ux 1 ) an d the 8>//xioiy>yo 


are alike eternal, are we to suppose that there are two separate 
and distinct Intelligences that is, inasmuch as vous exists in ^v\^ 
alone, two tyvxal to all eternity existing? What could be gained 
by such a reduplication? Moreover, if two such ^v-^al exist, there 
ought to be an idea of them a serious metaphysical compli- 
cation'. If on the other hand it be maintained that the cosmic 
soul is an emanation or effluence of the S^/xiovpyo's, this is practi- 
cally abandoning the present hypothesis in favour of that which is 
next to be considered. Finally, if the S^/tioupyos is a personal 
creator, he is certainly <aov, and vorjrov <3ov. What then is his 
relation to the auVo o m <3ov? Either he is identical with it 
or contained in it: in either case the hypothesis falls to the 
ground. The literal interpretation of Plato's words must there- 
fore be abandoned for the reason that its acceptance would 
reduce Plato's philosophy to a chaos of wild disorder. 

38. Lastly, the Srjp.iovpyos is identical with the avro ayaOov. (3) is he 
This view, properly understood, I conceive to be in a sense correct : id - e t u l Ivf 1 
but it needs the most careful defining, and, in the form in which it ai/rd o.ya- 
is sometimes propounded, is unsatisfactory. We can only accept 
it by realising that the avro ayaOov is the infinite intelligence, which 
is manifested in the visible universe : and we shall approach the 
question better if we identify the 8rjfj.iovpyo<s, not in the first place 
with the dya66v, but with tyvx"l> which comes to the same in the 

Now the position of the S^iovpyos in the Timaeus is precisely 
that of vov? /facriAcvs in the Philebus: see Philebus 26 E 28 E. 
Therefore the <fy/uovpyos is the universal intelligence from which all 
finite intelligences are derived. But intelligence or vov? is nothing 
else than ^vxq pure and simple, apart from any conjunction with 
matter. What then is the relation of pure intelligence to the 
cosmic soul which informs the universe ? Let us turn once more 
to the Philebus. In 29 E 30 A vovs is definitely identified with 
the cosmic soul ; it is the universal i/^x^ whereof all visible nature 
is o-w/xo. So then the Srj/uovpyos of the Timaeus must be identical 
with the world-soul. This is so : but the statement is not yet 
complete. For the (fy/uovpyos is pure reason, while the world-soul, 
being in conjunction with matter, is i/^x"? in all her aspects, cori- 

1 Compare Timaeus 31 A rd yap &oi>, oD ^pos av flrr]v titelvu. The 

irepi^x " Tfo-vra, oiroffa voT}rd. fo, ptO' argument is the same as in Republic 

trtpov devTfpov of'K S,v TTOT' elV irdXic 597 c. 
yap av irepov flvai rd irepl 



tion to 
the avrb 

not an 
exercise of 
will, but 
the fulfil- 
ment of 

taining the element not only of the Same, but of the Other also. 
In other words the 8>//xtovpyos is to the world-soul as the reasoning 
faculty in the human soul is to the human soul as a whole, in- 
cluding her emotions and desires. But the reasoning faculty is 
nothing distinct from the human soul ; it is only a mode thereof. 
The 8>7jnioiy)yos then is one aspect of the world-soul: he is the 
world-soul considered as not yet united to the material universe 
or more correctly speaking, since time is out of the question, he is 
the world-soul regarded as logically distinguishable from the body 
of the universe. And since the later Platonism has taught us 
to regard matter as merely an effect of the pluralisation of mind or 
thought, the S^toupyos is thought considered as not pluralised 
absolute thought as it is in its primal unity. As such it is a logical 
conception only; it has not any real existence as yet, but must 
exist by self-evolution and consequent self-realisation 1 . These 
two notions, thought in unity and thought in plurality, are myth- 
ically represented in the Timaeus, the first by the figure of the 
creator, the second by the figure of the creation : but the creator 
and the creation are one and the same, and their self-conscious 
unity in the living KO'CT/XOS is the reality of both. 

39. Now we may apply what has been said to the auro 
dyaOov. In 27 we identified the on'ro dya0ov with absolute 
thought or universal spirit. The identity of rous with the dya6ov 
is plainly affirmed in Philebus 22 c: compare too the language 
used of vovs in Philebus 26 E with that used of the dyaOov in 
Republic 508 E. We are justified then in identifying the orjfjuovpyos 
with the afro dyaOov, so long as the dyadov is conceived as not yet 
realised by pluralisation. For the realisation of the Good or of 
Thought comes to pass by the evolution of the One into the 
Many and the unification of both as a conscious whole. Thus 
Plato's system is distinctly a form of pantheism : any attempt 
to separate therein the creator from the creation, except logically, 
must end in confusion and contradiction. 

40. Thus we see that the process which is symbolised in 
the creation of the universe by the Artificer is no mere arbitrary 
exercise of power : it is the fulfilment of an inflexible law. The 
creator does not exist but in creating : or, to drop the metaphor, 
absolute thought does not really exist unless it is an object to 

1 I must guard against being sup- 
posed to mean that the pluralised 
thought is more real than the primal 

unity : only that the existence of both 
is essential to the reality of either. 


itself. So then the creator in creating the world creates himself, 
he is working out his own being. Considered as not creating he 
has neither existence nor concrete meaning. Thus we have not 
far to seek for the motive of creation : it is so, because it must be 
so. A creator who does not create is thought which does not 
think, being which does not exist : it is no more than the lifeless 
abstraction of Eleatic unity. 

After what has been said, it is almost a truism to affirm that The P ro * 
the process represented in the Timaeus is not to be conceived bolised 

as occupying time or as having anything whatsoever to do with in .the 

t nr-r.1 \ t Timaens 

time. Yet SO potent IS the spell of Plato S irorava. fjia^ava, that it indepen- 

may not be amiss to insist upon this once more. The whole story d . ent of 

.... r i r time and 

is but a symbohsation of the eternal process of thought, which spa ce. 

is and does not become. All succession belongs to the pheno- 
mena of thought pluralised ; it is part of the apparatus pertaining 
to them : but with the process of thought itself time has no more 
to do than space. It seems therefore vain to discuss, as has often 
been done, the eternity of the material universe in Plato's system. 
Considered as one element in the evolution of thought, material 
nature is of course eternal; but its phenomena, considered in 
themselves, belong to the sphere of Becoming and have no part in 
eternity : although, viewed in relation to the whole, time itself is a 
phase of the timeless, or, as Plato calls it, ' an eternal image of 

41. Only if we adopt the interpretation of the S^tovpyos The uni- 
which I have been defending can we understand Plato's statement V if rs f-if s 
in 920 that the universe is 'the image of its maker' for the ness of its 
reading TTOIT/TOU is better authenticated than vorjrov. If the KOO-/AOS creator< 
is the image of its maker, the maker must be identical with the 
O.VTO o eon <3ov. Now since the icooyxos is Trav, the <3ov cannot be 
anything outside it : rather it must be the notion which is realised 
in the universe ; a type not separate from the copy, but fulfilled in 
the copy and in that fulfilment existing. It must be the unity 
whereof the KO'O-/U,OS is the expression in multiplicity. Unity is the 
type, multiplicity the image thereof: and it is necessary that 
unity, if it is really to exist, must appear also in the form of 
multiplicity. Thus then must it be with the <3ov. But this is 
exactly the position we have seen reason for assigning to the 
S?7/aoupyo's, so that Plato is fully justified in identifying the two. 
So if we say that the universe is the likeness of its creator, 
we mean that it is unity manifested in plurality and so realised. 


The type and the likeness are the same thing viewed on different 

It is perhaps worth noticing that our view harmonises with 
Plato's statement in Parmenides 1340, that as absolute knowledge 
cannot belong to man, so the knowledge of finite things cannot 
appertain to God. But if God be distinct from the universe, and 
so far limited, there seems no reason why he should not have 
knowledge of finite things. A God who is not the All, however 
much his knowledge may transcend human knowledge, would 
surely have the same kind of knowledge. But a God whose know- 
ledge is of the absolute alone is a God whose knowledge is of 
himself alone ; and such a God must be the universe, not a deity 
external to the universe. 

The Koffpos 42. Having thus investigated the relation of the S^/uovpyos 
and the ^ ^ ^ cosm i c sou i anc i to the material universe, it behoves us to 

Y v ~X.n TOV 

Koffpov. make a similar inquiry concerning the relation of the Kooyxos and 
the i/^x 1 / T v Ko'cr/iou. The ij/v^oyovia of the Timaeus has been 
treated with some fulness in the commentary, so that a compara- 
tively brief statement may here suffice by way of supplement. 

The cosmic soul, like finite souls, consists of three elements 
of rauTov, Odrepov, and ovcrla : that is to say, the principle of Same, 
i.e. of unity and rest, of Other, i.e. of variety and motion, of 
Essence, which signifies the identification of these two in one 
conscious intelligence. The terms ravrov Odrcpov and ouVta have 
distinct applications, according to the side from which we regard 
the subject : these applications I have endeavoured to distinguish 
in the note on the passage which deals with the question. Let us 
first look at it thus. The world-soul consists (i) of absolute 
undifferentiated thought, (2) of this thought differentiated into 
a multitude of finite existences, and (3) it unites these two elements 
in a single consciousness. Now of what consists the material 
part, the body of the Ko'oyxos? Simply of the perceptions of finite 
consciousnesses. And as these perceptions exist only in the con- 
sciousness of the percipient souls, so these souls are comprehended 
in the universal soul, whereof we have seen that finite souls are, as 
it were, fractional parts. Therefore the cosmic soul comprehends 
within her own nature all that exists, whether spiritual or material. 
Thus the only reality of the universe is the soul thereof, which is 
the one totality of existence. Matter is nothing but the revelation 
to finite consciousness, in the innumerable modes of its apprehen- 
sion, of the universal spirit. All that is material is the expression 


in terms of the visible of the invisible, in terms of space and 
time of the spaceless and timeless, in terms of Becoming of 
Being. All sensible Nature is a symbol of the intelligible, and 
she is what she symbolises. So are all things at last resolved 
into an ultimate unity, which yet contains within itself all" 
possible multiplicity ; and Plato's philosophy, shaking off the 
last remnants of duality, reaches its final culmination in an abso- 
lute idealism. 

43. But is the cosmic soul herself percipient of matter, The cosmic 
or is such perception confined to limited intelligences ? I think Material 
the true answer is that the cosmic soul is percipient of matter perception. 
through the finite souls into which she evolves herself. We may 
regard her elements, TavroV, Odrcpov, owi'a, either as modes of her 
existence or as modes of her activity. As a mode of her existence, 
Odrepov signifies the multitude of finite souls in which she is plu- 
ralised. As a mode of her activity, Odrepov is sensible perception. 
But both modes must belong to the same sphere, so that per- 
ception of matter must belong to that phase of the universal soul 
which appears as a number of finite souls. Thus then the aggre- 
gate of perceptions experienced by all finite souls constitute the 
perception of matter in the cosmic soul : there is no such per- 
ception by the cosmic soul apart from the perceptions of finite 
souls. We must observe that in the region which is Odrepov rela- 
tively to the tyvxj TOV Kou/iov, TO.VTOV and ovcria reappear relatively 
to the finite souls which constitute that region. Each separate 
soul must have ravrov also, else it would not have ovaia, it would 
not substantially exist : and hence the element of Bdrepov in the 
cosmic soul, and by consequence the cosmic soul herself, would 
be nonexistent. So each finite soul is a complete miniature copy 
of the great soul. Accordingly in Plato's similitude we find that 
the Circle of the Other is constructed of soul which is composed 
both of Same and of Other. 

44. There is yet another question, the answer to which Relation 
is indeed to be inferred from what has been already said, but 

which ought perhaps to receive explicit treatment : how are the soul and 

. ^ the ideas. 

ideas related to the cosmic soul ? 

Since we have seen our way to identifying the Srjfjuovpyos both 
with the avTo dyaOov and with one element of the ^xn T0 " KOO-/AOV, 
the simple unity of thought, conceived as still undifferentiated, 
it follows that whatever relation we have established between the 
avro dyaOoy and the other ideas will hold good as between the 


cosmic soul and the ideas. But perhaps it may serve to render 
the matter clearer, if we put it in some such way as this. 

The ideas, we know, are self-existing, substantial realities. But 
they can in no wise be essences external to the world- soul, else 
would the world-soul cease to be All : they must therefore be in- 
cluded in it or identical with it. Now the body of the universe 
is the material image of the soul thereof: also all material things 
are images of the ideas. Thus then, being TrapaSeiy/xara of the 
same troves, the ideas and the cosmic soul coincide. The ideas, I 
say not an idea. For every single idea is the type of one class 
of material images ; the ideal tree is the type of material trees, and 
of nothing else. The material trees then represent the cosmic 
soul in so far as that can be expressed in terms of trees they 
represent, so to speak, the ScvSpoV^s of it. Accordingly the idea 
of tree is one determinate aspect of the cosmic soul that aspect 
which finds its material expression in a particular tree. And so 
the sum total of the ideas will be the sum total of the determi- 
nations of the cosmic soul the soul in all her aspects and signifi- 
cations. Also the supreme idea, the avro dyaBdv, will be the soul 
herself as such, considered as not in any way specially determined : 
the material copy of which is not anything in the universe, but 
the material universe as a whole, which is fairer, Plato says, than 
aught that is contained within it. 

Thus by following up this line we arrive at a result which 
precisely tallies with that which we reached when considering the 
relation between the avro dya.9ov and the inferior ideas. And 
so is the substantial existence of the ideas preserved intact, since 
each idea is the universal soul in some special determination. 
So too is the unity of the eternal essence maintained ; for all the 
ideas are the same verity viewed in different aspects. And here, 
as everywhere in the mature Platonism, do the principles of Unity 
and Multitude go hand in hand, mutually supporting one another 
and never to be parted. 

Qdrepov 45. We have seen that the universal soul is constituted 

as space. o f Tav ' T ov Odrepov and ovata, and the general significance of these 

terms has been discussed. But there is one special application 

of 6d.Tf.pov which has not yet occupied our attention. This is 

Plato's conception of x^P a ) or Space. 

Plato's identification of the material principle in nature with 
space than which there is no more masterly piece of analysis 
in ancient philosophy has also been very copiously dealt with 


in the notes; but it is too important to be entirely passed over 
in this place. 

It has been seen that in the Philebus the analysis of the material 
element in things was manifestly incomplete. The direipov was 
not altogether d-raOes, but possessed ei/arnoT^Te?, such as hotter 
and colder, quicker and slower, which were quantified and defined 
by the Trepa? ex ov - But only the quantity or limit is imposed 
upon the aireipov from without; the quality, though in an un- 
defined form, is still resident in it. Now however, in the Ti'maeus, 
all quality and attribute is withdrawn : we have an absolutely 
formless uVoSo^', or substrate, potentially receptive of all quality, 
but possessing none. So far, this may be identified with Aris- 
totle's irpwrrj v\t]. But Plato takes a further step, which was 
not taken by Aristotle : the uVoSo^i} is expressly identified with 
Space. How is this done ? 

The vVoSox?) is absolutely without form and void : no sense 
can apprehend it. The sensible objects of perception are the 
dor) do-iovTo, KCU fi6vTa the images thrown off in some mysterious 
way by the ideas and localised in the vTro8ox>j- All attributes 
which belong to our perceptions are due to these elorj, save one 
alone, which is extension. The vVoSo^, submissive in all besides, 
is peremptory on this one point of whatever kind a material 
object may be, it must be extended. So then, if we abstract 
from matter all the attributes conferred by the euno'vra KCU e'ltoVra, 
we have remaining just a necessity that the objects composing 
material nature shall be extended. Thus we see Odrtpov in 
another way playing its part as the principle of Difference. For, 
as Plato says, if the type and the image are to be different, if they 
are to be two and not one, they must be apart, not inherent one 
in the other : the copy must exist in something which is not the 
type, ovcrtas aju,axry7rojs dvTe\]. Hereupon 6a.Tf.pov Steps in 
and provides that something, to wit, the law of our finite nature 
which ordains that we shall perceive all objects as extended in 
space. Space then is the differentiation of the type and its image. 

But extension is nothing independently and objectively existing. 
For all our perceptions of things are within our own souls, which 
are unextended ; and the things exist not but in these perceptions, 
Extension then exists only subjectively in our minds. All the 
objectivity it has is as a universal law binding on finite intelli- 
gences, that they should all perceive in this way. It is a conse- 
quence and condition of our limitation as finite souls. 

4 6 


motive for 
so much 
space to 

The significance of 6drepov as space is thus but a corollary 
of its significance as pluralisation of mind ; since this pluralisation 
carries with it sensuous perception, which in its turn involves 
extension as an attribute of its objects. In like manner is time 
another consequence of this pluralisation : so that we may regard 
space and time as secondary forms of Odrepov. And so are all 
the aspects in which we view the element of Odrepov necessarily 
contingent upon its primary significance of Being in the form of 
Other, the principle of Multitude inevitably contained in the 
principle of Unity. 

46. Up to this point I have dwelt exclusively upon the 
metaphysical significance of the dialogue: this being of course 
incomparably more important than all the other matters which are 
contained in it. Nevertheless the larger portion of the work 
is occupied with physical and physiological theories, with elabo- 
rate explanations of the processes of nature and the structure and 
functions of the human body. This being the case, it would 
seem advisable to say a few words on this subject also. 

It might excite not unreasonable surprise that Plato, so strongly 
persuaded as he was that of matter there can be no knowledge, 
has yet devoted so much attention to the physical constitution 
of nature; more especially as he repeatedly declares that con- 
cerning physics he has no certainty to offer us, but at most 
'the probable account.' It is perhaps worth while to see if we 
can discover any motives which may have influenced him. 

In the first place it is to be observed that the restriction 
of ideas to classes of natural objects tended in some degree 
to raise the importance of physical study. If it is true that 
of natural phenomena themselves there can be no knowledge, 
it is yet possible that the investigation of these phenomena may 
serve to place us in a better position for attaining knowledge 
(or approximate knowledge) of the ideas, which are the cause and 
reality of the phenomena. For from the knowledge of effects 
we may hope to rise to the cognition of causes. If then ideas 
are of natural classes alone, we may at least gain thus much from 
the study of nature: we may by the observation of particulars 
ascertain what classes naturally exist in the material world, and 
thence infer what ideas exist in the intelligible world. As Plato 
says in 69 A, we ought to study the dvayKalov for the sake of the 


Oflov : that is to say, we must investigate the laws of matter in the 
hope that we may more clearly ascertain the laws of spirit. 
Physical speculation is not an end in itself: at best it is a re- 
creation for the philosopher when wearied by his more serious 
studies: but considered as a means of attaining metaphysical 
truth, it is worthy of his earnest attention. For this cause the 
study of material nature was encouraged in Plato's school; though 
Plato would have been scornful enough of the disproportionate 
importance attached to it by some of his successors. And since 
he thought it deserving of his scholars' attention, it was fitting 
that the master should declare the results of his own scientific 

It must be remembered too how Plato had found fault with 
Anaxagoras for not introducing TO /?e'ATrToi/ in his physical 
theories as the final cause. In the physical part of the Timaeus 
he seeks to make good this defect. He strives to show in detail 
how the formative intelligence disposed all matter so as to achieve 
the best result of which its nature was capable; to show that the 
hypothesis of intelligent design was borne out by facts. He 
is careful to point out that the physical processes he expounds 
are but subsidiary causes, subordinate to the main design of Intel- 
ligence; for example, after explaining the manner in which vision 
is produced, he warns us that all this is merely a means to an end : 
the true cause of vision is the design that we may look upon the 
luminaries of heaven and thence derive the knowledge of number, 
which is the avenue to the greatest gift of the gods, philosophy. 
Now of course on Platonic principles such a teleological account 
of Nature can have no completeness, unless it be based upon 
ontology ; since everything is good in so far as it represents 
the avro dyaOov. Plato describes phenomenal existence as materi- 
ally expressing the truth of intelligible existence ; and in so far as 
this expression is perfectly accomplished, the phenomena are fair 
and good. So then Plato, from the teleological side seeks 
to show that the material universe is ordered as to all its details in 
the best possible way, and demonstrates, from the ontological 
side, that this is so because all the phenomena of the universe are 
-symbols of the eternal idea of good. Plato's contention is that 
there is an exact correspondence between the ideal and phe- 
nomenal worlds, that material Nature is not a mere random 
succession of appearances, but has a meaning and a truth. And if 
material Nature has this significance, she cannot be unworthy 


of the philosopher's attention; she must be studied that her 
meaning may be revealed. Viewed in this light, the physical 
portions of the Timaeus have a genuine bearing on philosophy; 
and the very minuteness with which Plato has treated the subject 
proves that he attached no slight importance to it. 

The scientific value of these speculations is naturally but 
small: many of them are however very interesting, both intrinsi- 
cally, for their ingenuity and scientific insight, and historically, as 
showing us how a colossal genius, working without any of the 
materials accumulated by modern science, and without the instru- 
ments which it employs, endeavoured to explain to himself the 
constitution of the material universe in which he lived. 
Plato's 47. From the question that has just been raised, con- 

opinions cerning the bearing of physical inquiry upon metaphysical know- 
concerning ledge, naturally arises another question which should not be left 
ledge." altogether unnoticed. What did the Plato of the Timaeus con- 
ceive to be the province of human knowledge, and what sort 
of knowledge did he conceive to be attainable? We have already 
seen reason to believe that he had more or less altered his 
position with regard to this point since the Republic and Phaedo 
were written. This was to be expected: for, as the Theaetetus 
showed, ontology must precede epistemology; before we can say 
definitely what knowledge is, we must find out what there is to 
know. Therefore, since Plato's ontology has been modified, it 
may well be that this modification had its effect on his views of 

The object of knowledge is plainly the same as ever. Only 
the really existent can be known: and the only real existence 
is the ideas, and ultimately the auro aya06V. Knowledge then, in 
the truest and fullest sense of the word, signifies only the actual 
cognition of the supreme idea as it is in itself. Now in the days 
of the Phaedo and Republic we know that Plato actually aimed at 
such cognition. However remote the consummation might be, 
however despondingly the Sokrates of the Phaedo may speak of 
it, that and that alone was the end of the philosopher's labours 
an end regarded as one day attainable by man. But now, both 
in the Parmenides and in the Timaeus, Plato disclaims such abso- 
lute knowledge as lying beyond the sphere of finite intelligence. 
And he is right. For he who should know the Absolute would 
ip so facto be the Absolute. Only the All can comprehend the All. 
And if the supreme idea cannot be absolutely known, neither can 


the other ideas. For since every idea is, as has been said, a 
determination of the supreme idea, a complete knowledge of any 
one idea would amount to a complete knowledge of every other 
idea and of the supreme idea itself. From such ambitious dreams 
we must refrain ourselves. But we are not therefore left beggared 
of our intellectual heritage. Absolute knowledge of universal 
truth may be beyond our reach, but an approximation to such 
knowledge is in our power, an approximation to which no bounds 
are set. We have said that the supreme idea determines itself 
into a series of subordinate ideas. The more of these subordinate 
ideas we contemplate, the more comprehensive will be our con- 
ception of the supreme idea: and in proportion as our vision 
of the subordinate ideas gains in clearness, even so will our con- 
ception of the highest advance in truth. For since Truth is one 
and simple, every mode of truth is an access to the whole. This 
then is what Plato now holds up as the philosopher's hope an 
ever brightening vision of universal truth, attained by industrious 
study of particular forms of truth. Thus in place of the complete 
fruition of knowledge, once for all, of which we once dreamed, 
we have the prospect of a perpetual advance therein. And what- 
ever increment of knowledge we may win, although it is neces- 
sarily incomplete, it is real: the ladder has no summit, but we 
have gained one step above our former place. And there seems 
certainly nothing discouraging in the reflection that, however 
much we may succeed in learning, behind all our knowledge 
there lies something in wait to be known that though the truth 
which we know is true, there is always a truth beneath it that is 
truer still. 

Knowledge then is now as ever for Plato to be found in the 
ideal world : and there alone. Material nature is still to him 
a realm of mists and shadows, where nothing stable is nor any 
truth, where we grope doubtfully by the dim light of opinion. 
But through these mists lies the road to the bright sphere of 
reason, where abide the ideal archetypes, which are the true 
objects of our thought, and which have lost none of that lustre 
that once was chanted in the Phaedrus. There is no recession 
here : still the immaterial and eternal only can be known. All 
that is changed is the extension of the word knowledge. We 
know the ideas but as finite minds may know them ; that is, 
partially, with never perfect yet ever clearer vision : being our- 
selves incomplete, completeness of knowledge is beyond our 

P. T. 4 


scope. This restriction of the bounds of human knowledge must 
needs have presented itself to Plato's mind along with the clear 
conception of an infinite universal soul which is the sum and 
substance of all things.. For only in the endeavour to grasp the 
boundlessness of the infinite would he become fully alive to the 
limitation of the finite. 

Con- 48. The account I have thought it necessary to give of 

C ' Udin kL *^ e philosophical doctrines contained in the Timaeus is now 
completed. There are indeed divers matters of high importance 
handled in the dialogue which I have either left unnoticed or 
dismissed with brief mention. The theory of space propounded 
in the eighteenth chapter, although its profound originality and 
importance can hardly be overestimated, has been only partially 
examined : further treatment being reserved for the commentary 
on the said chapter, since it involves too much detail to be 
conveniently included in a general view of the subject such as 
I have here sought to give. The same will apply to the very 
interesting ethical disquisition towards the end of the dialogue, 
and to the psychological theories advanced in the thirty-first and 
thirty-second chapters. 

In the foregoing pages my aim has been to trace the chief 
currents of earlier Greek speculation to their union in the Platonic 
philosophy, and to follow the ever widening and deepening stream 
through the region of Platonism itself, until it is merged in the 
ocean of idealism into which Plato's thought finally expands. 
In particular I have sought to follow the history of the funda- 
mental antithesis, the One and the Many, from the lisping utter- 
ance of it (as Aristotle would say) by the preplatonic thinkers 
to its clear enunciation as the central doctrine of the later Pla- 
tonism. And however imperfectly this object may have been 
accomplished, I trust I have at least not failed in justifying the 
affirmation that the Timaeus is second in interest and importance 
to none of the Platonic writings. 

Of course it is not for a moment maintained that all the 
teaching I have ascribed to this dialogue is to be found fully 
expanded and explicitly formulated within its limits. To expect 
this would argue a complete absence of familiarity with Plato's 
method. Plato never wrote a handbook of his own philosophy, 


nor will he do our thinking for us : he loves best to make us 
construct the edifice for ourselves from the materials with which 
he supplies us. And this we can only do by careful combination 
of his statements on the subject in hand, spread, it may be, 
over several dialogues, and by sober interpretation of his figurative 
language, availing ourselves at the same time of whatever light 
we may be able to derive from ancient expositors of Plato, and 
chiefly from Aristotle. Consequently no theory we may thus 
form is a matter of mathematical demonstration : if we can find 
one which combines Plato's various statements into a systematic 
whole and reveals a distinct sequence of his thought, all reason- 
able expectation is satisfied. In evolving the opinions which 
have in this essay been offered concerning the interpretation 
of the Timaeus, I have made but two postulates that Plato does 
not talk at random, and that he does not contradict himself. 
To any who reject one or both of these postulates the arguments 
adduced in the foregoing are of course not addressed, since there 
is no common ground for arguing. But of those who accept them, 
whoever has an interpretation to propound which more thoroughly 
harmonises all the elements of Plato's thought than I have been 
able to do, and which more readily and directly arises from his 
language, e/ceo-os OVK fxOpo? wv d\\d <j>i\o<; 

49. It remains to say a few words about the text. In this 
edition I have rather closely adhered to the text of C. F. Her- 
mann, which on the whole presents most faithfully the readings 
of the oldest and best manuscript, Codex Parisiensis A. The 
authority of this ninth century ms. is such that recent editors 
have frequently accepted its readings in defiance of a consensus 
among the remainder; an example which I have in general 
followed. In departing from Hermann I have usually had some 
manuscript support on which to rely, and sometimes that of A 
itself: but in a very few cases (about six or seven, I believe, 
in all) I have introduced emendations, or at least alterations, of 
my own ; none of which are very important In order that the 
reader may have no trouble in checking the text here presented 
to him, I have added brief critical notes in Latin, wherein are 
recorded the readings of the Paris manuscript (quoted on Bek- 



ker's testimony), of C. F. Hermann, of Stallbaum, and of the 
Zurich edition by Baiter Orelli and Winckelmann, wherever these 
differed from my own. These authorities are denoted respect- 
ively by A, H, S, and Z. The readings of other manuscripts have 
not been cited. Fortunately the text of the Timaeus is for the 
most part in a fairly satisfactory condition. 

There are some small points of orthography in which this 
edition systematically differs from Hermann's spelling; but I 
have deemed it superfluous to record these. 



[17 Trepl (frv 




in. p. 

I. SO. El?, Bvo, T/9et9' o Be Brj rera/oro?, w <f)i\e Tt/xate, 17 A 
TToO roov %$e? fiev Bairvjiovav, ra vvv Be ecrriaropcov ; 

TI. 'A<r6eveid rt9 avr(a wviireaev, eo Sw/cpare?' ov yap av 
K(ov rrja-Be aTreXetTrero r^9 (rvvova-ias. 
5 2H. Ou/coOy o-ov rwvBe re epyov Kal TO inrep rov aTroi/ro? 

TI. Ilavu /u,ey ow, Kal tcara Buva/jiiv <ye ovBev e\\etyo/Av' B 
ovBe jap eit) av Bi/caiov, %^e? I^TTO croO ^evHrdevras, ot? 7*1; irpeTrov 
gevlois firj ov TrpoOvfioxj ere TOI)? \OITTOVS rjpaJv avra^ecmdv. 

8 etrj av : elvai A. &v etrj SZ. 

17 A 19 B, c. \. Sokrates meets by 
appointment three of the friends to whom 
he has on the previous day narrated the 
conversation recorded in the Republic. 
After the absence of the fourth member 
of the party has been explained, he pro- 
ceeds to summarise the social and poli- 
tical theories propounded in that dia- 

It will be observed that the unusually 
long introductory passage, extending to 
27 c, has its application not to the Ti- 
maeus only, but to the whole trilogy, 
Republic, Timaeus, Critias. The recapitu- 
lation of the Republic indicates the precise 

g caTa<f>ffTiai> : avTefaffTiav AZ. 

position of that work in the series; while 
the myth of Atlantis marks the intimate 
connexion which Plato intended to exist ' 
between the Timaeus and Critias : it is 
indeed artistically justifiable only in rela- 
tion to Plato's projected, not to his accom- 
plished work. It is obvious that when 
the Republic was written no such trilogy 
was in contemplation. 

The supposed date of the present dis- 
cussion is two days after the meeting in 
the house of Kephalos. The latter, as we 
learn from the beginning of the Republic, 
took place on the day of the newly esta- 
blished festival of the Thracian deity 


I. Sokrates. One, two, three what is become of the fourth, 
my dear Timaeus, of our yesterday's guests and our entertainers 
of to-day ? 

Timaeus. He has fallen sick, Sokrates : he would not will- 
ingly have been missing at this gathering. 

Sokrates. Then it is for you and your companions, is it not, 
to fulfil the part of our absent friend ? 

Timaeus. Unquestionably ; and we will omit nothing that 
lies in our power. For indeed it would not be fair, seeing 
how well we were entertained by you yesterday, that the rest 
of us should not heartily requite you with a fitting return of 

Bendis, a goddess whom the Athenians of a hexameter. It is quoted in Athenaeus 

seem to have identified with their own IX 382 A, where there is a story of a man 

Artemis. The festival took place on the who made his cooks learn the dialogue by 

1 9th or 2oth Thargelion ( = about 22nd heart and recite it as they brought in the 

or 23rd May). On the following day dihes. 

Sokrates reports to the four friends what 6 Si 81^ rfrapros] Some curiosity has 

passed at the house of Kephalos ; and on been displayed as to the name of the 

the next the present dialogue takes place. absentee ; and Plato himself has been 

i. cts 8vo rptis] This very simple suggested. But seeing that the conversa- 

opening has given rise to a strange tion is purely fictitious, the question would 

amount of animadversion, as may be seen seem to be one of those dfairodeiKra 

by any one who struggles through the which are hardly matter of profitable 

weary waste of words which Proklos has discussion. 

devoted to its discussion. Quintilian (ix 2. Sairvfiovcov] i.e. guests at the feast 

iv 78) attacks it for beginning with part of reason provided by Sokrates. 

56 HAATHNOS [i7- 

Sfl. *Ap' ovv /j,epvr)(r0e, oo~a vplv teal irepl u>v eirera^a elrrelv ; 
TI. Td fiev ftejMvrifAeOa, oaa Be pr), av rrapwv vTro/j,w>j<reis' 
fiaXXov Be, el fjttj rt crot, ^a\eiroi>, ef a/3%^9 Bid @pa%ea)V rrd\tv 
7rdve\de avrd, 'Cva, /3e/3aua0r) pa\\ov irap -fjfuv. 

5 2O. TaOr' carat. %#9 TTOU rwv vrf e/iou prjBevrwv \6ya)v 
irepl rro\ireia^ fy TO Ke<pd\aiov, o'ia re /ecu ef; o'Cwv dvBpdov dpicrTr] 
KarefyalveT av p,ot yevecrdai. 

TI. Kat fj,d\a 76 ?7/iui', a> Sw/cpare?, prjOeia-a irdat Kara vow. 
2fi. *Ap' ovv ov TO T&V <yect)p i y(3v oo~ai re a\\at re%vai irpwrov 
10 ev avry %<uy3l5 Btet\6ne0a drro rov ryevovs rov rwv TT/JOTr 
aovrwv ', 

TI. Nat. 

Kat Kara (frvcriv Brj Bovres TO Ka6' avrov e/ca<7T 
ev fj,6vov eTTirijSev/jLa Kai fj,lav eKacrrw re^vrjv rovrovs, ol-9 D 
15 Trpo rrdvrwv eSet TroXefielv, eliropev (9 a/ja avroix; Beoi <f>v\aKa$ 
elvat /JLOVOV rfjs TroXew?, ei re Tt? et;(o6ev r) Kal roov evSodev tot 
KaKovpyrjcrwv, Bt,Kaovra<; pev rrpdws Tot? dp^of^evot<; vrc avrwv 
Kal (pvcret <f>i\oi<; overt, %a\e7rov<? Be ev Tat9 /ia^at9 Tot9 evrvy^d- ISA 
vovffi rwv e^dpcSv YiyvojAevovs. 
20 TI. TlavraTraai p,ev ovv. 

<&variv yap ol/juai rtva roav (pv\dKU>v rrjs ^f^^9 eXe- 
fj,ev OvjAoeiBf), ap,a Be <j)i\6(ro<f>ov Belv elvat Btatye- 

13 Soi/res: didovres A. 14 (jdav exiiffTtp T^XV-TJV : sic SZ e Bekkeri coniectura. 

d<f>' fKa.<TTOV ry T^\ V V A, quae uncis inclusa retinuit H. 16 frdodev: tvdov SZ. 

i. <5<ra vfxiv] This is doubtless the by the more advanced ontology of the 

right reading. Sokrates had bargained Timaeus ; and were the dialogue actually 

with his friends, as we may learn from incorporated in a trilogy, it would stand 

20 B, that they should supply the sequel in need of sundry important modifica- 

to his discourse : and this they had con- tions. But the ideal commonwealth is 

sented to do. Thus in recapitulating his maintained intact : the laws of the /coXM- 

own contribution Sokrates recalls to their iroXts are agreeable to the ontological 

minds what is expected of them. and physical principles set forth in the 

6. irepi iroXireCas] Sokrates in his Timaeus and find their counterpart in 

summary of the Republic deals with it the institutions of ancient Athens as they 

solely as a political treatise, totally ig- are to be depicted in the Critias. Now it 

noring its metaphysical bearings. This, seems to me highly important to notice 

while very significant of the change in that the political theories of the Republic 

Plato's views, is due to the fact that it is are thus stamped with Plato's deliberate 

only on its political side that the Republic approval in a work belonging to the 

is connected with the rest of the trilogy. ripest maturity of his thought /j.d\a yt 

Its metaphysical teaching is superseded THUV prjOeiffa iraffi Kara vow. We ought 

18 A] TIMAIO2. 57 

Sokrates. Do you remember the extent and scope of the 
subjects I appointed for your discussion ? 

Timaeus. In part we remember; and whatever we have 
forgotten, you are here to aid our memory. But I should 
prefer, if it is not troublesome, that you should briefly recapitu- 
late them from beginning to end, that they may be more firmly 
fixed in our minds. 

Sokrates. I will. The main subject of my discourse 
yesterday was a political constitution, and the kind of prin- 
ciples and citizens which seemed to me likely to render it most 

Timaeus. Yes, and what you said, Sokrates, was very much 
to the satisfaction of us all. 

Sokrates. Was not our first step to separate the agricultural 
class and tradesmen in general from those who were to be the 
defenders of our state ? 

Timaeus. It was. 

Sokrates. And in assigning on natural principles but one 
single pursuit or craft which was suited to each citizen severally, 
we declared that those whose duty it was to fight on behalf of 
the community must be guardians only of the city, in case any 
one whether without or within her walls should seek to injure 
her, and that they should give judgment mercifully to their 
subjects and natural friends, but show themselves stern to the 
enemies they met in battle. 

Timaeus. Quite true. 

Sokrates. For we described, I think, a certain temperament 
which the souls of our guardians must possess, combining in a 
peculiar degree high spirit and thoughtfulness, that they might 

not then to regard the Laius&s indicating 15. <j)u\aKas] The distinction between 

any abandonment by Plato of his political 0u\a/cej and Micovpot is here neglected, 

ideal, but simply as offering a working cf. Republic 414 A a/>' oZv ws d\i)6s 6p0&- 

substitute so long as the attainment of TCLTOV Ka.\elv TOVTOVS ptv <J>u\a.Kas iravreXeTs 

that ideal was impracticable. Plato re- TWJ> re t^uOev iro\ep.i<av TUV re tvrbs 0t- 

mains all his life long a true citizen of \lwv, 6Vwi> ol fitv /*TJ povX^crovrai, oi 3 /urj 

that city ' whereof the pattern is pre- duvriaovrai KOMovpyeiv, TOI)S 3 viovs, o)s vvv 

served in heaven '. dri ^>y\acas ^/coXoO/xei', firticovpovs rt KO.I 

7. KaT<f>aivtT' av] $. belongs to >e- por)6oi>s TO?S rCiv &pi'>vTtav dby/jLa<riv ; 
vtaOau.. 11. a^a \&v 0v|ioi8rj] Republic 375 B 

9. rd TWV Y W PY*'' V ] Republic 370 E foil, 


LVa 7T/JO5 eKarepOVS OVVailtrO Op6w<S TTpdoi KOI 

TI. Nat. 

SO. Tt Se rpo<prjv ; dp ov yvfjivaantcrj teal p,ov<riKfi 
5 T,'ocra trpocrijKei rovrois, ev aTracri reBpd^Bai', 
TI. HaVf n-ev ovv. 

Toi)9 e 76 ovrut rpa<j>svra<; e\e%0r) TTOV 
apyvpov f&JTt aXXo Trore fj^rjSev /cr^ytta eavrwv 'iSiov 
8eiv, aXX' co? eTTitcovpovs fticrOov \afJL(BdvovTa<s rfjs ^>i>\a/c//9 irapa 

JO TCOJ/ 0-<pofJ,VQ)V VTT dVTWV, 0<T09 < 

re Brj Koivf) /cat %vvSiatT(i)fj,evov<; pera a 

aperf}*; Siu TTCIVTOS, r<Sv dXXcov eTTiTySevfAdTcov a/yovra<j 

TI. 'E\e%#?; /cat ravra 
15 SO. Kat ywei/ 8/7 /cat vrept ryvvaiKwv eirep,vr)(j6r)p,ev, w? ra? C 
rot? dvSpdcri 7rapa7r\tjcria<; etrj ^vvap/j.oo'Teov, teal rd eTriTr)- 
Trdvra Kowa /cara re TroXe/iof /cat /cara r^y aXX^v Biairav 

TI. Tayr7 /cat raura \eyero. 

SO. Tt 8e S^ TO 7re/Jt T77? 7rai8o7roti'a9 ; 17 TOVTO IJLCV Sta TJ}Z/ 
drjdeiav T&V Xe%#eWa>z/ ev/jLvrj^ovevTov, on Koivd rd r<av ydfj,o)v 
KOI rd rwv TraiScov rrdcriv aTrdvrwv eri6ep,ev, /jirj^avcofjievoi, O7r<w9 
k Trore TO lyeyevrjjjLevov avra> ISia yvcacroiro, vofj,tovcrt Se rrdvres D 

avrovs oftoyeveis, doe\<f>ds fj,ev /cat a8eX<^>oi)9 ocronrep dv 
25 T^? rrpeTTovaT)? ei/To? ^Xt/a'a? yiyvcovrai, rovs 8' e^rrpoaOev /cat 
tivwQev yoveas re /cat <yovea>v rrpoyovovs, rovs 8' et9 TO icdrwdev 
eicyovovs TratSa? T6 etcyovuv ; 

TI. Nat, /cat ravra ev/jivrj/jLovevra, y \eyeis. 
2Ii. f/ O7TG)9 Se S?) Kara Svvafjuv evdvs yiyvoivro a><> apiaroi 
30 Ta? (privets, dp ov n.ep>vqp,e6a, a$9 TOU9 apj^ovras e<f)ap,ev /cat Ta? 

Selv et? T^I/ To5y yd/Awv <rvvep%iv \d0pa fitj^avdadat E 

20 T( S^ : T/ 5a/ AH. 22 wxa.v&fj.evoi : /iijx^^M^ouy AH. correxit Stephanus. 

airao-i] Stallbaum would have 15. ircpl -yvvaiKcSv] Plato's regulations 

atrcuri. Plato frequently uses for the training of women will be found 

the old form of the dative plural : but in Republic 451 C 457 B: he treats of 

there seems no real objection to the pre- vaidovoila in the immediate sequel. 

position. 22. pixavcopcvoi] Hermann's defence 

7. P.ITTI \pvtr6v] Republic 416 D, E. of fjirfxavu^vov^ is vain; nor is Butt- 

E] TIMAIO2. 59 

be able to show a due measure of mildness or sternness to friend 
or foe. 

Timaeus, Yes. 

Sokrates. And what of their training ? were they not to 
have been trained in gymnastic and music and all studies which 
are connected with these ? 

Timaeus. Just so. 

Sokrates. And those who had undergone this discipline, we 
said, must not consider that they have any private property in 
gold or silver or anything else whatsoever, but as auxiliaries 
drawing from those whom they preserved so much pay in return 
for their protection as was sufficient for temperate men, they 
were to spend it in common and pass their lives in company 
with one another, devoting themselves perpetually to the pursuit 
of virtue and relieved from all other occupations. 

Timaeus. That also is the way it was put. 

Sokrates. Moreover with regard to women we observed that 
their natures must be brought into harmonious similarity with 
those of men, and that the same employments must be assigned 
to them all both in war and in their general mode of life. 

Timaeus. Yes, that was what we said. 

Sokrates. And what were our rules concerning the pro- 
creation of children ? This, I think, is easy of recollection 
because of the novelty of our scheme. We ordained that the 
rights of marriage and of children should be common to all, to 
the end that no one should ever know his own offspring, but 
that each should look upon all as his kindred, regarding as 
sisters and brethren all such as were between suitable limits of 
age, and those of the former and previous generations as parents 
and grandparents, and those after them as children and children's 

Timaeus. Yes, it is very easy to remember this too as you 
describe it. 

Sokrates. Next with a view to securing immediately the 
utmost possible perfection in their natures, do we not remember 
that it was incumbent on the rulers of both sexes to make 

mann's ^-xavu^voa very satisfactory. 31. tls r^v TWV ydpuv c-vvcpgiv] J?e- 

I agree with Stallbaum in receiving the public 459 D, E. 


60 IIAATftNOS [18 E- 

K\ripoi<> ri&iv, OTTW? 01 Kaicol %<wpt9 o'i T' dyaOol rat9 o//,ot'eu9 
etcdrepoi gvXXij^ovrat, Kal pr) ris avroi*; ej(6pa Sid ravra yiyvtjrai, 
TV'XTJV yyovfievois ai-rlav rrj? ^uXX^eoK ; 

TI. MefjLvijfjL0a. 

5 2n. Kat fjLrjv ore ye rd fj,ev rwv dyaOcav OpeTrreov etyapev 19 A 
elvai, rd Be r&v KCLKWV et? rrjv d\\r)v \d6pa BiaSoreov 7ro\iv' 
eirav%avop,eva)v Be a-KOTrovvTa? del TOI)? a^iou? 7rd\tv dvdyeiv Seiv, 
rot)? Be jrapd a$i<Tiv dvagiovs 6t9 rrjv rwv efraviovrwv 


SO. *Ap' ouy S?) SieX^Xy^a/iei/ ^877 KaQdirep %^9, 0)9 eV 
/c6</>aXaiot9 ird\iv eirave\6elv, r) iroOov^ev en ri rwv p^Oevrwv, w 

TI. Oi}Sa/4ft>9, aXXa rai^ra raOr' ^y ra \e%6evTa, w Sw/3are9. B 

15 II. Sfi. ^AKOVOIT' dv rjBrj rd fj,erd raOra Trept r^9 7roXtTeta9, 

7)1; 8iij\0ofJ,ev, olov TI 7T/309 avrr)v TreTrovOws rvy^dva). Trpoaeoiice 

Be Brj nvl pot, TOHoSe TO Trddos, olov ei T49 ^a5a a\a TTOU 6eaa~d- 

/uei/09, efre i5?ro ypa<f>rj<; elpyaapeva eire /cat %>vra d\r)0ivd)<i, rj<rv- 

yiav Be ayovra, et9 eTriOv/juiav dtyltcotTo 0edo~a<?0ai Kivovpevd re 

20 avrd Kal n roov rot9 cratf^acn BOKOVVTCOV Trpoaijicetv Kara rrjv aya>- 

viav d&Kovvra' ravrov KCU eyca irkTrovQa ?rpo9 rrjv TTO\IV fjv c 

Biij\8ofjLV. TJBecos <ydp av rov \6y(a 8ie^toyro9 dKOva-ai/J? dv 

dffXovs, 01)9 7roXi9 d&Kel, TOVTOVS avrrjv dyatvi^ofAevijv 7r/oo9 7roXet9 

aXXa9 7rpe7r6vra><i, elV re TroXe/iOf dfyucoiievrjv Kal ev ro3 7roXe/Aeti> 

25 ra 'Trpoa'rjKOVTa aTroBiBovaav rfj TratBeia KOI rpocpfj tcard re ra9 

dia\\drreiv A. 14 TayrA: awrd S. 

24 re : 75 A. omittit S. 

6. Xa9pa SiaSoTe'ov] Plato has here enjoined : idv re afarepos ticyovos vv6\a\- 

somewhat mitigated the rigour of his /cos 77 virocrldripos ytvrjTat, /j.t)5evl 

ordinance in the Republic : see 459 D TOI)J /careXe^croiia't*', oXXa rrjv ry <J>vffei 

apiarovs rats dplffrats avyylyvecrOai ws xovvav rtfj.^v airodovres <5ffovffu> els 5i)fuovp- 

TrXeurrdKis, TOI)S 5^ ^>ai;Xo7-(Toi;s rats <j>av- yobs rj els yeupyovs. Probably then, when 

Xordratj rovvavrlov, Kal ruv /lev rk ticyova. Plato speaks of not rearing the inferior 

rptfaiv, ruv deftr/. Compare too 4600 rit. Si children, he merely means that they are 

TUV x ei P^ vuv > Kal fav TI rui> oXXuw avdir-qpov not to be reared by the state as infant 

ylyvrjrai, ev airopp-firtf re Kal aSf/Xtf) Kara- 0u'Xa*cs. 

tcptyovaiv us irpewei : and again, 461 c 7. iravavo|Uvv 8i o-Koirovvras] 

fjLd\iffra fj.ev /t7?5' els <j>ws fK<f>epeiv Kvi)/j.a Plato clearly recognises that the laws of 

Hrj5e 7' ev, edv yevrjrai, eav 5e ri /3id<rr}rai, heredity are only imperfectly understood 

oiirw Ti6eva.i ws OVK ovarjs rpo<j>rjs r<p rot- by us, and that therefore the results may 

ovrif. But in 415 B the milder course is often baffle our expectation. 


provision for the contraction of marriages by some secret mode 
of allotment, that to the good and bad separately might be 
allotted mates of their own kind, and so no ill-feeling should 
arise among them, supposing as they would that chance governed 
the allotment ? 

Timaeus. We remember that. 

Sokrates. And the offspring of the good we said must be 
reared, while that of the bad was to be secretly dispersed among 
the other classes of the state ; and continually observing them 
as they grew up, the rulers were to restore to their rank such as 
were worthy, and in the places of those so promoted substitute 
the unworthy in their own rank. 

Timaeus. Quite so. 

Sokrates. Have we now said enough for a summary re- 
capitulation of yesterday's discourse ? or do we feel that any- 
thing is lacking, my dear Timaeus, to our account ? 

Timaeus. Not at all :- you have exactly described what was 
said, Sokrates. 

II. Sokrates. Listen then and I will tell you in the next 
place what I feel about the constitution which we described. 
My feeling is something like this : suppose a man, on beholding 
beautiful creatures, whether the work of the painter or really 
alive but at rest, should conceive a desire to see them in motion 
and putting into active exercise the qualities which seemed to 
belong to their form this is just what I feel about our city 
which we described : I would fain listen to one who depicted 
her engaged in a becoming manner with other countries in those 
struggles which cities must undergo, and going to war, and 
when at war showing a result worthy of her training and educa- 

19 B 21 A, c. ii. Sokrates now ex- on them to gratify his wish. Hermo- 

presses his desire to see his pictured city krates readily assents, but first begs 

called as it were into life and action ; he Kritias to narrate a forgotten legend of 

would have a representation of her actual ancient Athens, which he thinks is appo- 

doings and dealings with other cities. site to the matter in hand : to this Kritias 

He distrusts his own power to do this consents. 

worthily, nor has he any greater confi- 17. olov t TIS] This passage is re- 

dence in poets or sophists. But he de- ferred to by Athenaeus xi 507 D in sup- 

clares that his three companions are of all port of the truly remarkable charge of 

men the best fitted by genius and training 0i\o5oi'o which he brings against Plato, 
to accomplish it ; and he therefore calls 


ev rol<f epyois Trpd^eis teal Kara ra? ev rots \6yois Biepfjiijvevcreis 
jrpos etederras rv 7roXe&)i/. raOr' ovv, cu,ria icai ' Ep/io/cpare?, 
e/tavrov fj,ev auras teareyv&tea /AT; TTOT' av Sward? yeveaOai rovs D 
(ivBpas teal rr}v 7roA.ii/ iicavdos eytcaifudo-ai. leal TO fiev efJiov ovBev 
5 Oav^aarov' aXXa, TT)I' avrrjv Bo^av ei\r)<f)a tfal rrepl rwv ird\ai 
yeyov6ra)v teal rwv vvv ovrcov Troirjrwv, ov ri TO TronjriKov drtfid- 
&>i> yevos, d\\d Travrl SrjXov eJ<? TO fjUfj-yriicbv edvos, ol? av ev- 
rpa<j>rj, ravra ptfiTja-erai pa<rra teal dpurra, TO 8' etcrcx; rfjs rpo<f>f)<t 
etcdcrrois yt,yv6/j,evov^ ^aXe-TroV p.ev epyois, ert Se ^a\7ru)rpov E 

10 \6yois ev fJLifjLet<rdai. TO 8e rwv a-o<j>iarwv yevos av iro\\wv fj,ev 

-.-' ^oywv teal Ka\a>v d\\(av /iaX' e/MTreipov rjyr)fj,ai, (j>o/3ovjLLai Be, ftij 
7T<U9, are TrXavTjrov ov teard TroAet? otV^cret? re l&ias ovSaprj Siw- 
terjtcos, aaro^ov apa <f)i\0(r6<l>c0v dv&pdav y teal TroXiriKwv, 'ocf av 
old re ev TroXe/zw teal fj,d%ai<> Trpdr-rovres epya> teal \oyy rcpoaoyn- 

15 Xof)z/Te5 e/catTTOt? irpdrroiev teal \yoiev. KaraKiXenrrat Srj TO rfjs 
v/jLerepa? e^ew? yevos, a//a d/j,<j>orepwv (f>vcrei teal rpo<}>f) ^ere-^ov. 20 A 
TlfUUOS re ydp '68e, evvoptordrris dv vroXecu? Tr;? ev *\ra\iq Aotept- 
So?, ovo-ia teal yevet ovo'evos varepos u>v rwv eteei, Ta? 
fiev a/3%a? Te teal rijj,d<; rwv ev rfj rroKei f^eraKe^elpio-rat, 

20 o-o^i'a? 8' av tear* e/j,rjv Sogav err dtepov a-Tracr?;? e\Tj\v0e' Kptriav 
8e TTOV rrdvres ol rffi icrjAev ovSevos ISicorijv ovra wv Xeyofiev' T^9 
Be 'J&ppotepdrovs av rrepl fyvcrews teal rpo(j>!j<;, TT/JO? inravra 

6 Kal rwv : Kal irepl TWV A. 

7. ri |up.T]TiK6v ?0vos] See Republic a very similar phrase below at 42 D 

392 D, 398 A, 597 E foil. Poetry, says TTJJ irpwr^j Kal AplffT^ d.<f>lKoiro 

Plato, is an imitative art ; and poets can- ews. ? expresses a permanent habit 

not imitate what is outside of their experi- of mind. ^ 

ence. For the use of tOvos compare 16. cin<})OTpwv] sc. <f>i\off&<f>ov Kal 

Sophist 242 D, Gorgias 455 B, Politicus TTO\ITIKOV. 

290 B. 17. T Yap] The re is not answered: 

9. ?n8^ xoXtirwTtpov XOYOIS] Proklos see Shilleto on Demosth.ya/j. leg. 176. 

raises needless difficulty about this. Plato vvo|AwrdTTis wv ir6\ws] The laws 

simply means that to describe such things of the Epizephyrian Lokrians were 

worthily requires a rare literary gift : it is ascribed to Zaleukos, 660 B.C. From 

far easier to find an Agamemnon than a Demosthenes Kara Tt/j-oKparovs p. 744 it 

Homer. appears that this people was so conser- 

12. art irXavtfriv ov] cf. Sophist 224 B, vative as to pass no new law, with a 

where one kind of sophist is described as single amusing exception, during a 

rbv (laOyfjiaTa ffwuvovfj-fvov ir6\tv re K period of 200 years. In Laws 638 D 

rriXewj vofj.lefjLaTos ifutfttflM* they are said eiW/twroTot rwv irepl ineivov 

15, TO TTJS vp.T^pas %ws Y^VOS] i.e. rbv rbirov ytyovivai. Pindar adds his 

men of a philosophical habit. We have testimony, Olymp. XI (x) 17 vfati yap 

20 A] TIMAIOS. 63 

tion, both when dealing in action and parleying in speech with 
other cities. Now, Kritias and Hermokrates, my own verdict 
upon myself is that I should never be capable of celebrating the 
city and her people according to their merit. So far as concerns 
me indeed, that is no marvel ; but I have formed the same 
opinion about the poets, both past and present ; not that I 
disparage the poetic race, but any one can see that the imitative 
tribe will most easily and perfectly imitate the surroundings 
amid which they have been brought up, but that which lies 
outside the range of each man's experience is hard to imitate 
correctly in actions and yet harder in words. As to the class of 
sophists on the other hand, I have always held them to be well 
furnished with many fine discourses on other subjects ; yet I am 
afraid, seeing they wander from city to city and have never had 
dwellings of their own to manage, they may somehow fall short 
in their conception of philosophers and statesmen, as to what in 
time of war and battles they would do and say in their dealings 
and converse with divers people. One class then remains, those 
who share your habit of mind, having by nature and training a 
capacity for both philosophy and statecraft. Timaeus for in- 
stance, belonging to an admirably governed state, the Italian 
Lokris, and one of the foremost of its citizens in wealth and 
birth, has filled offices of the highest authority and honour in 
his native city, and has also in my judgment climbed to the 
topmost peak of all philosophy : while at Athens we all know 
that Kritias is no novice in any of the questions we are discuss- 
ing: of Hermokrates too we must believe on the evidence of 

'Arp^/ceia iroKiv AoKpuJf Ze<f>vpluv. mides 169 C KO.KVOS [sc. Kpirias] 

20. iir aKpov dirdoTjs] Plato's judg- /tot VTT' ffj.ou diropovvros dvayKaffdrjvat Kal 

ment of the historical Timaeus can hard- avrdj a\uvai inrb airoplas. are ovv eiJ- 

ly have gone so far as this: that however SOKI/JLUV ^Kaarore rjffxtvfro TOI>* ira- 

he must have set a high estimate on the povras, Kal otire ^vy^wpfiaal /tot ^df\fv 

Pythagorean's philosophical capacity he dStWros tlvai SifXfoOai a vpoi'KaXov/jujv 

has proved by making him the mouth- avrov, tXeyt re ovdiv 0-a^s, eiriKaXvirruv 

piece of his own profoundest specu- r-qv diroplav. 

lations. 22. ' EpfJioKparovs] This was the cele- 

21. ovSevos I8iwn]v] ^KaXelro WCWTTJJ brated Syracusan general and statesman, 

fdv ev 4>i\o<r6$ois, <f>i\6ffo<j>os S ev I5iu- distinguished in the Peloponnesian war. 

reus, says Proklos. He seems to have A Hermokrates mentioned among the 

been one of those who made a good friends of Sokrates by Xenophon memo- 

show out of a little knowledge : cf. Char- rabilia I ii 48 is doubtless a different 

64 HAATHNOS [20 A 


elvai iKavrjs TTO\\(OV papTvpovvrayv TTUTTevTeov 877. o Kal %0e<? eyco B 
8iavoov/jLvo<j vfuav Seopevav ra Trepl TTJS TroXtre/a? 8te\6etv Trpo- 
6vfici)<; e^apt^onrjv, clScos, QTI TOV e7<? \6yov ovSeves civ vfi<av 
ede\6vTwv iKavatTepov diroSoiev' et? yap Tro\e^ov irpeTrovra Kara- 
5 o~Tr/o-avT<} TIJV 7ro\iv airavf avrfj TO, TrpoarjKovra aTroSotr' av 
fjiovoi TWV vvv. eiTTcav 8rj TaTriTa^Oevra dvreTrera^a vp,lv a Kal 
vvv \eyw. gvva)fjio\oyrj<raT > ovv KOivy a-Ke-^rafievot Trpos vfia? 
avrovs et? vvv avraTroBcacreiv fj,oi TO, TWV \6jajv evia, Trdpei/jLi re C 
ovv Brj KKO<rfji,r)/j,evo<; evr' aura KOI TrdvTwv eTOifioraro^ (av Be- 

EP. Kat fiev STJ> KaOdirep etrre T///at09 o8e, w ^wfcpares, ovre 
\,\etyo(jiV TrpoOvfjiias ovSev ovre eanv ovSefiia 7rp6(pa<n<; rjfjfiv 
TOV fj,rj Bpav TavTa' OXTTC teal %#e9 evOvs evOevSe, eVetS?) frapd 
KpiTiav 7T/30? TOV ^evwva, ov /cal KaTa\vofiev, dtjjiKO/jieda, Kal Tt 

15 TTpOTCpOV KaO' 68oV aVTO, TaVT <TK07rOVfJi6V. O 8' OVV qfJilV \OJOV D 

640-7777; o~aTO CK TraXaia? dfcofjs' ov Kal vvv Xe76, w Kptria, 
iva %vvBoKifi,do~r) TT/JO? TTJV liriTa^iv etr' eTTtr^Seto? elV a 


KP. TaOra ^p?) 8pdv, el Kal rc3 TpiTw KOIVCOVOJ 

TI. Ao/cet 

KP. "A/coue 877, ScoArpare?, XOYOU /u-aXa /Ltey aroTroi;, jravra- 
iraa'i ye ftrjv d\r)6ov<>, to? o raJy eTrra <7o<ct$TaT09 2oX<ui/ TTOT' e^?;. E 
?7i> yxey ouy otVeto? /cat <T(f)6opa ^)tXo? 77/ity ApcoTriSov TOV irpo- 

25 TraTTirov, KaOaTrep \eyei TroXXa^oO /cat avro? ey r^ Troiijcrei,' 

: IKWIJV H. 5: 5i6 ASZ. 9 aw omittit S. 13 TOV ny: rb fj.-q S. 

14 a<piKOfj.e6a : cupiKotfteOa A. 19 x/ 31 ?' : 5^ A. 

person : a friendship between Sokrates prominence given to war throughout the 

and the Syracusan leader is in itself im- passage is notable: it is considered as a 

probable, if not impossible, and the Ian- normal mode of a state's activity. And 

guage of Sokrates in the present passage in fact, when Plato wrote, it could hardly 

seems inconsistent with the existence of be regarded otherwise. 

any intimacy. That however the Syra- 9. KCKOO-IJLTJIIE'VOS] i.e. with festal attire 

cusan is the interlocutor in this dialogue and garland. 

seems to me certain. Plato has assem- n. Kal \&v 8ij] This is the only 

bled a company of the very highest dis- occasion throughout the dialogue on 

tinction, among whom an obscure com- which Hermokrates opens his lips. 

panion of Sokrates would be out of 24. Apwir8ov] Proklos makes out 

place. the genealogy thus : 
4. els yelp iroXtpov irpt'irovra] The 

E] TIMAIO2. 65 

many witnesses that his genius and acquirements qualify him to 
deal with all such matters. This was in my mind yesterday 
when I willingly complied with your request that I should 
repeat the conversation concerning the ideal polity ; for I knew 
that no men were more competent than you, if you were willing, 
to supply the sequel : no one else indeed at the present day 
could, after engaging our city in an honourable war, render her 
conduct worthy of her in all respects. So after saying all that 
was enjoined on me I in my turn enjoined upon you the task of 
which I now remind you. Accordingly you consulted together 
and agreed to entertain me at this time with a return ' feast of 
reason '. I am here then ready for it in festal array, and never 
was there a more eager guest. 

Hennokrates. Indeed, Sokrates, as Timaeus said, there will 
be no lack of zeal on our part, nor can we attempt to excuse 
ourselves from performing the task. In fact yesterday imme- 
diately on leaving this spot, when we reached the guest-chamber 
at the house of Kritias where we are staying, and even before 
that on our way thither, we were discussing this very matter. 
Kritias then told us a story from an old tradition, which you had 
better repeat now, Kritias, to Sokrates, that he may help us to 
judge whether it will answer the purpose for our present task or 

Kritias. So be it, if our third partner Timaeus agrees. 

Timaeus. I quite agree. 

Kritias. Listen then, Sokrates, to a tale which, strange 
though it be, is yet perfectly true, as Solon, the wisest of the 
seven, once affirmed. He was a relation and dear friend of 
Dropides, my great-grandfather, as he says himself in many 

Solon Dropides 

Kritias (the elder) 

Kallaischros Glaukon (the elder) 

Kritias (the younger) Periktione Charmides 

Plato Glaukon Adeimantos 

He must however be mistaken in making a relationship. Moreover it would seem 
Solon and Dropides brothers : Plato's that Solon has been placed a generation 
words evidently do not imply so close too near to the elder Kritias. 

P. T. 5 



[20 E 

Be Kpiriav rrov rov ^fierepov rrdrrrrov elirev, w? drre pvi) povevev av 
7TO05 rjp.d't 6 yeptov, on fieyd\a Kal OavfJLacrra rfjaBi 1 eirj rca\ata 
epya rfjs TroXeto? VTTO ypovov /cat <f)dopd<f avvpwrrwv rj^avio'fj.ei'a, 
trdvrwv Be ev fj.eyio~rov, ov i>vv tTTifivrjffdeia'i rrpirrov av rjplv eir) troi 21 A 

5 re aTToBovvai %dpiv Kal rrjv 6eov afia ev rfj I 7rai>rjyvpei BiKaiw re 
Kal d\r}0(Ja<; olbvrrep vfLVOvvra^ eyKW/Mid^iv, 

2n. Eu \eyeis. aXXa 8^ rrolov epyov rovro KpiTta5 ov 
\ey6fj,evov (Aev, to? Be rrpa^dev OI/TG)? VTTO rf)o~Be rfjs 7roXea)5 ap- 
%aiov Btrjyeiro Kara rijv SoXeovo? QKOIJV ; 

10 III. KP. '70) (f>pd<ra) -jraXaibv OKTJKOW^ \6yov ov veov 
dvBpo?. f)v /j.ev yap Brj rore Kpirias, u5? e<f)r), o-^eBov 771)5 rjBrj 
rwv ei-evrjKovra ercav, eya> Be Try fj,d\io~ra Se/cer?;?' ij Be Koupec3Ti5 B 

Kal rore gvveftr) rot? rraio~iv' aO\a yap oi 

I TTOV rov : iroi; omittunt SZ. 

5. ^v rig iravtfyvpti] The goddess is 
of course Athena; and the festival would 
seem to be the lesser Panathenaia, as 
Proklos tells us. Considerable discussion 
has arisen as to the time of year in which 
this festival was held. The greater Pana- 
thenaia, which took place once in four 
years, lasted from the iyth to the 25th 
Hekatombaion. The lesser festival was 
annual. Demosthenes Kara Tifj-OKparovs 
26 refers to a Panathenaic festival which 
took place in Hekatombaion ; and it is 
affirmed by some scholars that he is 
speaking of the lesser Panathenaia. Were 
this so, it would follow that the greater 
and lesser festivals were held at the same 
time of year. But Proklos has an ex- 
plicit statement to the contrary: on ye 
flip TO IlavaflTjwua (sc. ra fiiKpa) rots 
BevSiSe/otj tJtrtTO \tyovffiv ol viro/JLV-rj- 
fjia.TiffTa.1, Kal 'ApttrroTAijj 6 'P65tos ftap- 
Tvpel TO ptv iv llfipaiei HfvSiStia rrj et\dct 
TOW Ga/yyijXtwi'Oj eiriTC\fiff0ai, tirtffOa.1. ot 
rat rept TIJV 'AOrjvav lopras. It seems to 
me that this direct evidence is not to 
be outweighed by an uncertain argument 
based on the passage of Demosthenes. 
Clinton Fasti Hellenici II pp. 332 5 
has a careful discussion of the question 

elirev: tlvetv A. 

and decides in favour of placing the lesser 
Panathenaia in Thargelion. 

7. o Xry<5j.vov p^v] Stallbaum is 
ill advised in adopting the interpretation 
of Proklos ny travv ftev -reOpv\ri[j.tvov, 
ytvofjifvov ot 5/iws. The meaning is be- 
yond question ' not a mere figment of the 
imagination (like the commonwealth de- 
scribed in the Republic), but a history 
of facts that actually occurred'. Cf. 26 E 
TO re ^17 ic\ao0tnTa. nvOov d\X' a\i}0ivbv 
\6yov elvai vd/jifjLeya. iron. 

4i A 25 D, c. iii. Kritias proceeds 
to tell a story which his grandfather 
once learned from Solon : that when 
Solon was travelling in Egypt he con- 
versed with a priest at Sais ; and begin- 
ning to recount to the priest some of the 
most ancient Hellenic legends he was 
interrupted by him with the exclamation 
'Solon, ye are all children in Hellas, 
and no truly ancient history is to be 
found among you. For ever and anon 
there comes upon the earth a great de- 
struction by fire or by water, and the 
people perish, and all their records and 
monuments are swept away. Only in 
the mountains survive a scattered rem- 
nant of shepherds and unlettered men, 

21 B] 


passages of his poems : and Dropides told my grandfather 
Kritias, who when advanced in life repeated it to us, that there 
were great and marvellous exploits achieved by Athens in days 
of old, which through lapse of time and the perishing of men 
have vanished from memory : and the greatest of all is one 
which it were fitting for us to narrate, and so at once discharge 
our debt of gratitude to you and worthily and truly extol 
the goddess in this her festival by a kind of hymn in her 

Sokrates. A good proposal. But what was this deed which 
Kritias described on the authority of Solon as actually performed 
of old by this city, though unrecorded in history? 

III. Kritias. I will tell an ancient story that I heard from 
a man no longer young. For Kritias was then, as he said, hard 
upon ninety years of age, while I was about ten. It happened 
to be the 'children's day' of the Apaturia ; and then as usual 
the boys enjoyed their customary pastime, our fathers giving us 

knowing nought of the past : and when 
again a civilisation has slowly grown up, 
presently there comes another visitation 
of fire or water and overwhelms it. So 
that in Greece and most other lands the 
records only go back to the last great 
cataclysm. But in Egypt we are pre- 
served from fire by the inundation of the 
Nile, and from flood because no rain 
falls in our land : therefore our people 
has never been destroyed, and our re- 
cords are far more ancient than in any 
other country on earth '. Then the priest 
goes on to tell Solon one of these his- 
tories : how that nine thousand years ago 
Athens was founded by Athena, and a 
thousand years later Sais was founded 
by the same goddess ; how the ancient 
Athenians excelled all nations in good 
government and in the arts of war ; and 
above all how they overthrew the power 
of Atlantis. For Atlantis was a vast 
island in the ocean, over against the 
pillars of Herakles, and her people were 
mighty men of valour and had brought 
much of Europe and Africa under their 
sway. And once the kings of Atlantis 

resolved at one blow to enslave all the 
countries that were not yet subject to 
them, and led forth a great host to sub- 
due them. Then Athens put herself at 
the head of the nations that were fight- 
ing for freedom, and after passing through 
many a deadly peril, she smote the in- 
vaders and drove them back to their 
own country. Soon after there came 
dreadful earthquakes and floods ; and the 
earth opened and swallowed up all the 
warriors of Athens ; and Atlantis too 
sank beneath the sea and was never more 

13. 'AirarovpCwv] Apaturia was the 
name of a festival in honour of Dionysos, 
held in the month Pyanepsion, which 
corresponded, roughly speaking, with 
our October. It lasted three days, of 
which the first was called 56pirtia, the 
second d.vappva'is, the third Kovpewris. 
On this third day the names of children 
three or four years of age were enrolled 
on the register of their tpparpla. Proklos 
seems mistaken in making dvappwis the 
first day ; all other authorities place 56p- 
Treia first. 



edecrav pa^a>oYa9. jro\\v fj.ev ovv 877 /ecu TroXXa 
Troiyuara, are Se vea /car' etceivov rov xpovov ovra rd ZoXa>ro9 
TroXXoi rcov TTdiScw yaaiiev. elrrev ovv Brj ns rdJv (frparepwv, eire 
&f) SOKOVV avr<a Tore eire Ka\ ftdpiv Tivd rut Kpiria <f>epa)V, Soiceiv 

5 ot rd re aXXa o~o(pa>rarov yeyovevai SoXtoz/a /cal /cara r^y Trotrjo'iv C 
av TWV 7roirjT<av irdvrwv eXevdepuararov. 6 Srj yepav, <r<f)6Spa yap 
ovv fiefjLjrrjfJicu, p,d\a re tf<rdr) KOI oiaf46i$id(ra<> enrev' Et ye, (a 
'A/jkvvav&pe, /x) Trapepyq) rfj 7roiij(rt Karexp'lo'aTO, aXX' ea-Trov&drcei 
tcaOdirep aXXot, TOV re \6yov, ov air Alyinrrov Stvpo rfveyKaro, 

10 aTrereXeere icai fir) Sid ra<? <TTa<7et9 VTTO KUKWV re d\\(av, ova evpev 
evBdoe IJKWV, tjvayKaadr) Kara[ie\fj(rai, Kara ye e/jirjv ougav ovre D 
'H(T('o8o9 ovre "0/4*7/309 oire aXXo9 ou8et9 ^04777779 ev^oKi^(arepo<t 

>/ w rrt / *> f N / t f/ rr / * TT 

eyevero av irore avrov. 1 19 o 771/0 Xo7O9, 77 o 09, w Kpma ; xl 
Trepl fuyforqf, <f>r), teal ovofiaa-rordrrj^ rracr^uv St/catorar' av irpd- 

5 fea>9 ovarj<j, fjv 77^6 77 ?roX(9 eirpa^e p,ev, Sid Se xpovov teal <f>6opdv 
r&v cpyaaanevatv ov Siijpicea-e cevpo 6 \6yos. Aeye ef dp^rj<t, ff 
S' o<t, ri re /cat 7TC09 KOI vrapd rivwv ft>9 0X77^77 SiaiC7)ico(0<; e\eyev 
6 %o\a)v. "Ei<rri Tt9 /car' AiyvTrrov, 77 S' 09, ev rc5 AeXra, vrepl E 
o icard Kopv<f>r)v a^l^erai TO TOU Nei'Xou pe)/za, Sai-Tto9 eiriica- 

20 \ovfjievo<f vofjbos, rovrov Se rov vopov fttyumf 7roXt9 ai?, o^ei/ 8>) 
/tat "A/ia<r<9 771; 6 fiaaiXevs' o?9 T?79 7roXea)9 ^09 dp^rjyo^ ri9 
<rnv, Aiyirrrria-rl fiev rovvoua NrjiO, t E t \\r]vio'rl Se, 009 6 e/ceivcov 
Xo709, ' Adrjvd' fj.(i\a Se <f)i\a6tjvaioi tcai riva rpoTrov oifceioi rwvS* 
elvai <f>acriv. ol Sr/ SoXeoy ^77 iropevOels <r<f)6Spa re yeveo~6ai 

i-> Trap' ai/rot9 evrifio^, Kal 877 /cat ra TraXata dvepwraiv rovs aa\i(rra 22 A 
irepl ravra rouv lepeatv epTreipovs a"%eSov ovre avrov ovre d\\ov 
Ei\\7]va ovSeva ovSev a><; 7ro9 eiTreiv elSora Trepl rdov roiovrwv 
dveupeiv. /cat rrore Trpoayayeiv ftov\r)0ei<i avrovs Trepl rwv dp- 

IO KO! fjL-^: Kal el pri A. 13 rf irtpl: rj omittit S. 25 ave/)wrtDi : dvepururros wore A. 

10. 8ui rd <rrd<ris] Plutarch Solon Stallbaum's note it appears that this 

c. 31 says it was old age, not civil reference to Amasis placed in Solon's 

troubles, which prevented Solon from mouth has been regarded as an anachro- 

carrying out his designs. nism, and so Stallbaum himself seems to 

14. dv...ot!<rt|s] i.e. it would have consider it. But since Amasis ascended 

been, had circumstances been less un- the Egyptian throne in 569 B.C., accord- 

favourable. ing to Clinton, there is no obvious 

71. "AjMwris 6 peuriXeus] According reason why Solon should not mention 

to Herodotus II 172 the birthplace of him, or why he may not even have visited 

Amasis was not Sais itself, but Siouph, him, as Herodotus affirms, i 30. For 

another cltv in the Saitic nome. From .Solon was certainly alive after the usur- 

22 A] TIM AIDS. 69 

prizes for reciting poetry. A great deal of poetry by various 
authors was recited, and since that of Solon was new at the 
time, many of us children sang his poems. So one of the clans- 
men said, whether he really thought so or whether he wished to 
please Kritias, he considered that Solon was not only in other 
respects the wisest of mankind but also the noblest of all poets 
The old man how well I recollect it was extremely pleased 
and said smiling, Yes, Amynandros, if he had not treated poetry 
merely as a by-work, but had made a serious business of it like 
the rest, and if he had finished the legend which he brought 
hither from Egypt, instead of being compelled to abandon it by 
the factions and other troubles which he found here on his 
return, my belief is that neither Hesiod nor Homer nor any 
other poet would have enjoyed greater fame than he. What 
was the legend, Kritias ? asked Amynandros. It concerned a 
mighty achievement, he replied, and one that deserved to be the 
most famous in the world ; a deed which our city actually per- 
formed, but owing to time and the destruction of the doers 
thereof the story has not lasted to our times. Tell us from the 
beginning, said the other, what was the tale that Solon told, and 
how and from whom he heard it as true. 

There is in Egypt, said Kritias, in the Delta, at the apex of 
which the stream of the Nile divides, a province called the 
Saitic ; and the chief city of this province is Sais, the birthplace 
of Amasis the king. The founder of their city is a goddess, 
whose name in the Egyptian tongue is Neith, and in Greek, as 
they aver, Athena: the people are great lovers of the Athenians 
and claim a certain kinship with our countrymen. Now when 
Solon travelled to this city he said he was most honourably 
entreated by the citizens; moreover when he questioned con- 
cerning ancient things such of the priests as were most versed 
therein, he found that neither he nor any other Grecian man, 
one might wellnigh say, knew aught about such matters. And 
once, when he wished to lead them on to talk of ancient times, 

pation of Peisistratos, which occurred in vonlfrvoiv, ?5oj tiriypa^riv elx*, 

560. '70} ei/j.1 irav rb ytyovbs Ka.1 ftv Kai t<ro- 

11. Nt|8] This goddess is identified /j.evov Kal rbv t/j-bv wfirXov ov&eis TTW 

by Plutarch with Isis, de hide et Osiride flcrjrds 
9 rb 5' tv 2aet TTJJ 'Atfijpas, rjv Kal ""law 

7 o IIAATONOS [22 A- 

yaiwv et9 \6you? TWV Tr/Be ra ap^aiorara \eyew eTTi^eipelv, irepi 
tbopcovew re TOV irpwrov Xex#eWo9 Kal Nto/3/79, Kal fierd TOI> fcara- 
K\v<rfJibv av Trepl Aet>/caXtWo9 /cat Hvppas w? BteyevovTO nv6o\oyelv, ^ % 
KOI TOVS ej; avTtoV yevea\oye"iv, Kal TO, TWV ITWV '6aa r\v 019 eXeye B 

5 TretpacrBai, BiafivrjfjLovevwv TOI)? %p6vovs dpiOjteiv' icai Tiva enrelv rwv 
iepewv ev fid\a TraXatoV *H 2,6\wv, SoXw^, "EXX^/i/e? ael 
e'ore, yepcov 8e"E\\r)v OVK etrriv. aKovcras oiv, II<W5 rt TOUTO 
<f>dvai. Neoi eVre, elirdv, rdi i|ru^;a<f Trdvres' ovBe/j.iav yap ev avrai<; 
t' dp-^aiav dtcorjv 7ra\aidv So^av ou3e pdOrj^a XP V V noXiov 
TO Se ToyTcof atTtoy roSe. TroXXal /cat /cara TroXXa <f)0opai, C 
yeyovcKriv dvOpwTrwv teal ea-ovrac Trvpl fj,ev KCU v&an (teyio-Tai, 
(jivpiois 8e aXXoi9 erepai ^pa^vrepai. TO yap ovv Kal Trap 1 
\ey6/Avov, W9 Trore 3>ae0Q)v 'HXtof Trai? TO ToO Trarpos appa 
^ei/'^a? Sid TO fir) &vvaTo<; elvat Kara rrjv TOV iraTpbs 6Sbv eXavveiv 

15 rd T 7rl 7^9 %uveKavo- Kal avTos KepavvwOels 8i(p6dpr), TOVTO 
fjivBov pev afflfia e%ov \eyeTai, TO Be dXrjOes ecrTt TWI/ Trepl yr t v 
Kal KaT 1 ovpavbv IOVTMV irapd\\a%i$ Kal Bid jiaKpwv ^povwv D 
yiyvofievrj TUIV eVi 7^9 Trvpl TroXXa) <p6opd. TOTC otv oVot KOST * J c ' 
opt] Kal ev i5>|r^Xot9 T07rot9 Kal ev ^rjpois oiKovcri, fj,d\\ov Bio\\vv- 

20 Tat TO>V 7rora/iot9 /cat 0a\djTp TrpocroiKovvTcav' Be o NetXo9 
et9 T Ta aXXa awTrjp Kal TOTC etc TavTrjf T^9 aTropias aa^et 
\v6fJLevos. oTav S' av Beol TTJV yfjv vBaa't, Ka0aipovT<; KaTaK\v- 

22 Ocoi: olOfoi SZ. 

2. ^opwv^ws] Phoroneus is said in 384 Kiihn Kal TUV KaTa.K\i6ivruv OVK ol$' 
the legend to have been the son of Ina- et T Kal i^rpiov \p!>vov dieytvero. 

chos : he was nevertheless the first man 16. pSOov p.\v cr\^\u>.] Compare Poli- 

according to the explanation in Pausanias ticus 268 E, where another myth is 

II xv X^yerat 5 Kal 85e \6yos' $opuvta similarly explained as a fragmentary re- 

iv rjj yrj raimy yevtffffai irpurov, "Ivayov miniscence of the great convulsion that 

5 OVK dvdpa a\\a TOP iroranbv Trartpa took place when the motion of the uni- 

tlvai $opuveT...$opuvfvt Si o 'Ivd\ov TOVS verse was reversed. 

dvOpuwovs ffvvjyaye irpurov h KOIVOV, ffiro- 1 7. irapaXXois] This does not sig- 

pdSas T^WS Kal <p' eairruv eKdffTore oUovv- nify a reverse motion, like the dvaKijK\r}- 

ras' Kal rb \uplov ts o trpuTov T)6pol<?OT)(rai> <ns of Politicus 269 E, where the same 

aarv dn>ofj.d<r()r} fyopuvinov. Proklos gives word occurs, but some deviation from the 

a list of several persons who enjoyed the wonted orbits, as in Republic 530 B 7/7- 

distinction of being accounted ' first men ' veadal re raura del wo-ai/rwj Kal ovSany 

in various parts of Greece. ovdtv vapaXKdrreiv. The irapa\Xa|tj must 

3. ws 8iry^vovTo] ' how they survived'. not be regarded as due to accident, which 
This seems clearly the meaning here ; but Plato does not admit into his scheme : it 
it is a rare use, which we find also in is a phenomenon which, occurring at long 
Hippokrates irepi tvid-riijuuv I vol. in p. but definite intervals, is strictly in the 

D] TIMAIO2. 71 

he essayed to tell them of the oldest legends of Hellas, of 
Phoroneus who was called the first man, and of Niobe; and 
again he told the tale of Deukalion and Pyrrha, how they sur- 
vived after the deluge, and he reckoned up their descendants, and 
tried, by calculating the periods, to count up the number of 
years that passed during the events he related. Then said one 
of the priests, a man well stricken in years, O Solon, Solon, ye 
Greeks are ever children, and old man that is a Grecian is there 
none. And when Solon heard it, he said, What meanest thou 
by this ? And the priest said, Ye are all young in your souls ; 
for ye have not in them because of old tradition any ancient 
belief nor knowledge that is hoary with eld. And the reason of 
it is this: many and manifold are the destructions of mankind 
that have been and shall be; the greatest are by fire and by 
water; but besides these there are lesser ones in countless other 
fashions. For indeed that tale that is also told among you, how 
that Phaethon, the child of the Sun, yoked his father's chariot, 
and for that he could not drive in his father's path, he burnt up 
all things upon earth and himself was smitten by a thunderbolt 
and slain this story, as it is told, has the fashion of a fable; 
but the truth of it is a deviation of the bodies that move round 
the earth in the heavens, whereby comes at long intervals of 
time a destruction with much fire of the things that are upon 
earth. Thus do such as dwell on mountains and in high places 
and in dry perish more widely than they who live beside rivers 
and by the sea. Now the Nile, which is in all else our preserver, 
saves us then also from this distress by releasing his founts : but 
when the gods send a flood upon the earth, cleansing her with 

regular course of nature. quotes with disapprobation. IIop<j>vpios 

1 2. Xv6|itvos] The explanation given n^v 5?) <pt]ffti', &TI 5oa rjv iraXcua Aiyvirritav 

of this word by Proklos is utterly worth- rb vdup KaruOfv dvafiXvvTdveiv ry dvapdffct 

less : Xuerai ykp 'Arrt/cwj Sri \vei TTJS TOV NeiXou, Sik Koi ISpwra yrjs ^/cdXow rbv 

diroplas ijyuas d Ne?\os. Even conceding NeiXov, ical rb m tcarufffv ravro 

the more than doubtful Atticism of \v!>- r$ Alyvwrly 8i)\ovi> Kal rb <rwfi> Xud- 

fjifvos = \vwi> (the only authority Stall- fj.ei>ov, ovx 8ri 17 XIUM* XUO/U^J'T; TO vXrjOos 

baum can quote is a very uncertain in- rwt> vSa-rtav iroieT, d\\' Sri \verai diro ruv 

stance in Xenophon de venatu I 17), the tavrou irtjyuv ical vpofiffiv tU TO ipQavis 

clumsy tautology of the participle, thus ^7rexd/x'os irp&Tfpoi>. Nothing can be 

understood, is glaring. It appears to me more natural than that the Egyptians 

that the right interpretation has been should have believed that the 'earth is 

suggested by Porphyries, whom Proklos full of secret springs ', which by their 


[22 D 

Tat9 Trap' vfilv 

, ol fiev ev rot? opefft Biaa-a>ovrai J3ovtc6\ot voxels re, 01 8' ev 

ea-iv ei9 rrjv 0d\arrav VTTO r<av Trorafioov $e- E 
povrat, Kara Be rrjvBe rrjv x&pav ^ T Tore oure aXXoTe civcodev 
eVi T09 dpovpas VBcop eirippel' TO 8' evavriov KarwB^v irdv erra- 
5 rieWt -rrtyvKev. Wev Kal Si a9 ama9 rdvOdSe o-y&peva Xeyerat 
TraXaiorara. TO 8e d\r)0e$ ev Tracrt Tot? TbVo<9, ^TTOU /i 

77 Kavfj,a amlpyti, 7r\eov, rore 8e e\arrov del 761/09 e 

ocra Be fj Trap VJAIV rj rf)8e rj Kal tear' d\\ov TOTTOV cov 23 A 
a/eo)i/ lo-pev, ei irov Tt ica\bv rj fj^eya yeyovev rj ical nva &ia<popdv 
10 d\\r)v e%ov, Trdvra yeypapfjieva etc 7ra\aiov T^S' eVrli/ eV rot9 
/epoi9 al ffar(fxrp,eva, ra Be Trap v/juv Kal T049 a\Xot9 apn 
KaT<TKeva<r/j,ei>a eKda-rore Tvy^di'ei ypafjifjiaa-i Kal aTraaiv, oiroawv 
7roXet9 Seovrat,, Kal 7rd\iv Bi eiwOorwv eVcof S<nrep vocrr)p,a ijKei 
fapopevov avroi<j pevp,a ovpdvtov Kal rov<f dypaftfiaTovs re Kal 
15 a/xouo-oi/9 eXiTrev ifi&v, od<TT iraXiv % p%^9 olov vkoi jiyvecfde, B 
ovBev tSoT69 OUT T<uv rfjBe ovre T&v "Trap vp2v, ocra TJV ev TO?? 
%povois. rd yovv vvv Srj yevedXoyrjdevra, u> SoXwi/, Trepl 
Trap vfjLtv a BiijXdes, TraiBtov flpa-xy ri Biatpepei pvOwv, ot 
irpwrov nev eva 7^9 KaraKkvc^ov fie/jLi-rja-Qe TroXXeijy efj,Trpoa-0ev 

4 K&ru6ev TTO.V : irav omittit Z. 9 aicoty dedi ex A. acog HSZ. 

breaking forth gave rise to the inunda- 
tion. It is true that there is still need of 
an explanation why the springs burst 
forth at a certain season : but the ancient 
Egyptians do not stand alone in sup- 
posing that they solve a difficulty by 
removing it a stage further back. \v6- 
/tevoj will therefore mean ' being re- 
leased ' by the unsealing of its subterra- 
nean founts. This explanation also gives 
a good and natural sense to KaruOev 
tira.vifra.1 below. I hold it then undesira- 
ble to admit pvbuevos, which is the reading 
of some inferior mss. 

3. KttTd TljvSl TT]V XWf*"'] The 

priest's theory is as follows. The destruc- 
tion of ancient records is due (i) to con- 
flagrations, (2) to deluges. From the first 
the Egyptians are preserved by the inun- 
dation of the Nile, from the second by 
the total absence of rain in their country. 
Accordingly their population is continu- 
ous, and their monuments and other 

records escape destruction. But in Greece 
and elsewhere, when a deluge comes, the 
inhabitants of cities and the low countries 
are swept into the sea, and only the rude 
dwellers in the mountains escape : cf. 
Critias 109 D, Laws 677 B. Thus from 
time to time the more cultivated por- 
tion of the inhabitants, with all their 
memorials, are cut off, and civilisation has 
to make a fresh start : on which account 
all their history is of yesterday compared 
with that of the Egyptians. It would 
seem however that a conflagration which 
should occur in the winter or spring might 
take Egypt at a disadvantage. 

6. T& 8i dXijOls] The application of 
this remark is not very obvious, but I 
take it to be this. We have seen that 
the history of the Egyptians, owing to 
their immunity from <f>0opal, goes back to 
an extremely remote period, and conse- 
quently many <j>0opai dv0pwirui> are re- 
corded. Elsewhere this immunity does 

23 B] TIMAIOS. 73 

waters, those in the mountains are saved, the neatherds and 
shepherds, but the inhabitants of the cities in your land are 
swept by the rivers into the sea. But in this country neither 
then nor at any time does water fall from on high upon the 
fields, but contrariwise all rises up by nature from below. 
Wherefore and for which causes the legends preserved here are 
the most ancient that are told : but the truth is that in all places, 
where exceeding cold or heat does not forbid, there are ever 
human beings, now more, now fewer. Now whether at Athens 
or in Egypt, or in any other place whereof we have tidings, any- 
thing noble or great or otherwise notable has occurred, we have 
all written down and preserved from ancient times in our temple 
here. But with you and other nations the commonwealth has 
only just been enriched with letters and all else that cities 
require : and again after the wonted term of years like a recur- 
ring sickness comes rushing on them the torrent from heaven ; 
and it leaves only the unlettered and untaught among you, so 
that as it were ye become young again with a new birth, know- 
ing nought of what happened in the ancient times either in our 
country or in yours. For instance the genealogies, Solon, which 
yojj just now recounted, concerning the people of your country, 
are little better than children's tales. For in the first place ye 

not exist : tradition tells of but one countries is no greater than that of the 

<j>dopa; and people suppose that there records. 

has been but one, and that the existence 12. KaT<rKeva<r|A^va...YpaK > H Laeri ] 'lit- 
of man in their country dates from acorn- eris mandata', says Stallbaum, a render- 
paratively recent time. But the truth is, ing which will surely find few friends : 
says the priest, that in all countries where nor can we confine ira<riv oirbiruv ir6\fts 
the climate admits of human life there dtovrai to public monuments, as he would 
has been a human population of varying have us. KareffKevaff^va. means ' fur- 
extent surviving a number of <f>Qopat t nished ' or ' enriched ', a sense which it 
although no memorial of the earlier in- bears several times in Thucydides : see VI 
habitants remains. It was a common belief 91, viil 24. The following words ge- 
that as the North from cold, so the South nerally comprehend all the appurtenances 
from heat was uninhabitable by man : cf. of civilisation : amongst others, as Proklos 
Aristotle meteorologica II v 362 b 26 fv0a says, r^xvai Kal a.yopa.1 KO.I \ovrpa,. TO, irap' 
fj.h yap Sia ^Ox J oi/Ktri KaroiKovcnv, (vOa. V/MV'IS also a general phrase, =your insti- 
d dia T7)v a\tai>. The difficulty about tutions or commonwealths. Compare 
the sentence is that rb 5' aXrjff^s has the Critias no A &TO.V tdrjrdv riffiv ydy rou 
air of correcting the statement in the (St'ou Ka,TrKeva,<rfitva. 
preceding clause : whereas what is really 13. 81' clwOoruv T<OV] These words 
corrected is the implied misconception ; show conclusively that the <f>ffopal were 
i.e. that the antiquity of man in other normal and regularly recurrent. 

74 IIAATHNOS [23 B- 

yeyovoro)v, ert Be TO Kd\\io~rov Kal upicrrov yevo? eV dvOprirrovs 
ev rfi \(apa rfj Trap* OVK fore 76701/09, e wv o~v re Kal rrdaa 
TJ 7roXf9 e<rri rd vvv vp,wv, 7repi\ei(f>devro<t Trore aTrep/jiaros /9/3a^eo9, c 
aXX' i5/za? \e\t]0e Bid TO rov<f irepiyevofiei ov 9 eVt 7roXXa9 yeved? 

5 ypdfj,/j.a<ri reXevrdv dffxavovs. tfv yap Brj Trore, to 2oX&>i>, uTTfp TJ}I/ 
fieyl&Tijv (pdopav vSacriv rj vvv *A.6r)vai(0v ovo~a 7roXt9 upla-rr} 7T/309 
T rov 7ro\fj,ov Kal Kara Trdvra evvofiwrdrf] &ia<f)ep6vTW y KO\- 
\HTTa epya Kal TroXiTfiai yeveaOai \eyovrat K(i\\iarai Traa-oov, 
OTTwraiV VTTO Tov ovpavov 7;/ifi9 CLKOTIV irapete^d^Oa. aKOvaas D 

> ovv 6 26\tov <f>r) 6avp,daai Kal iratrav Trpodvp-lav %eiv Seo/xei/09 
TWV iepewv irdvra 8t aKpiflelas ol TO. irepl TWV TrdXat TroXirwv 
6^179 8ie\0tiv. rov ovv iepea (ftdvaf <&6bvos oi)Set9, <w SoXwi/, aXXa 
<rov re eWa epco Kal T^9 7roXeG>9 vfiwv, p.d\iora 8e T^9 Beov X"P iV > 
r) ri]v re vfierepav Kal ryvoe eXa^e xal edpe-^re Kal errai^evae, rrpo- 

15 repav fiev rr)v Trap' V/JLIV erecri ^iXi'ot9, K F^9 re Kal 'tL<f>ai<rTov TO E 
<nrep/J,a Trapa\a(3ov<ra vfiwv, rr/vSe Be vo~repav. rfj<j Be evffdBe 
BiaKoo-(j,ri<Te(i)<; Trap' ev Tot9 lepois ypd/jL/j.a(nv o/CTa/ao-^tXtW 
erwv dpiO/jibs yeypa-rrrai. rrepl Brj rwv evaKiff^lXia yeyovorow errj 
rro\nu)v aoi Br)\(oo-a> Bid ftpa^ecov voftovs, Kal rwv epywv avrols 

20 o Ka\\i(rrov ercpd^dri' TO 8" a/c/3*/3t9 irepl rcdvrwv e<pej; r;9 eio-avdts 24 A 
Kara o-%o\rjv avrd rd ypdfjLfiara \a{36vre<; Bieffi/jiev. rois p.ev ovv 
vofjbovs cTKoirei. repot rov<> rfjBe. TroXXa ydp 7rapa8eiy/J,ara rwv 
rore reap vfilv ovrwv evddBe vvv dvevprjcrets, Trpcorov /j,ev TO rv 
lepewv yevos diro rwv d\\cov %<u/?t9 d^copta-f^evov, fterd Be rovro TO 

g oiroffuv inr6: biroffuv vvv viro HZ. 10 fx fiv: ff\etv SZ. 

16 fvOdSt : ti>0a.5lS. 22 Tjjde: rrjvde A. 

i. iir' eiv8pirovs] ^iri signifies exten- curious: it seems to stand for 'political 

sion over: a use exceedingly rare in Attic institutions'. 

prose, but occurring again in Critias 1 1 2 E 15. ITJS TC KCU 'H^aio-rov] As we 

ifl traffav TS>vp<avrjv Kal 'Afflav /card re shall presently see, earth and fire are the 

cwfjMTuv KctXXr; Kal Kara TT\V T&V \f/vxuv two principal elements of which material 

vavroiav dpfrrjv AXoyi/ioi re yoav Kal 6vo- nature is composed, air and water being 

/xoffrdroroi vavru* TUV Tore : and a similar, means between them ; cf. 31 c foil. Fire 

though not identical, use is to be found is the simplest combination of one of the 

in Protagoras 322 D. It is not uncommon two primary bases, while earth is the 

in Homer, e. g. Iliad X 2 1 3 ptya KV ol only form of the other, 5 1 D foil. These 

inrovpdviov K\OS ffy \ irdvras fir' dvffpu- were the two ap^al of Parmenides : Arist. 

irow. metaph. I v gS6 b 33 dvo ras alrlas Kal Mo 

5. virip Tqv |iryo-TTjv <}>0opdv] vwip ras dpxas vaXiv rldrjcri, Ocpubv Kal if/vxpov, 

= back beyond. olov irvp xal yijv \tyuv. Cf. physica I v 

8. iroXiTtiai] The plural is somewhat i88 a 20. Plato's statement falls in with 

24 A] TIMAIOS. 75 

remember but one deluge, whereas there had been many before 
it ; and moreover ye know not that the fairest and noblest race 
among mankind lived once in your country, whence ye sprang 
and all your city which now is, from a very little seed that of 
old was left over. Ye however know it not, because the sur- 
vivors lived and died for many generations without utterance in 
writing. For once upon a time, Solon, far back beyond the 
greatest destruction by waters, that which is now the city of 
the Athenians was foremost both in war and in all besides, and 
her laws were exceedingly righteous above all cities. Her deeds 
and her government are said to have been the noblest among all 
under heaven whereof the report has come to our ears. And 
Solon said that on hearing this he was astonished, and used all 
urgency in entreating the priests to relate to him from beginning 
to end all about those ancient citizens. So the priest said, I 
grudge thee not, O Solon, and I will tell it for thy sake and for 
the sake of thy city, and chiefly for the honour of the goddess 
who was the possessor and nurse and instructress both of your 
city and of ours ; for she founded yours earlier by a thousand 
years, having taken the seed of you from Earth and Hephaistos; 
and ours in later time. And the date of our city's foundation is 
recorded in our sacred writings to be eight thousand years ago. 
But concerning the citizens of Athens nine thousand years ago I 
will inform you in brief of their laws and of the noblest of the 
deeds which they performed : the exact truth concerning every- 
thing we will examine in due order hereafter, taking the actual 
records at our leisure. 

Consider now their laws in comparison with those of our 
country ; for you will find here at the present day many exam- 
ples of the laws which then existed among you : first the 
separation of the priestly caste from the rest ; next the distinc- 

Athenian mythology : Erechtheus was the ical TOVTWV ol plv Iptes, ol 5 

son of Earth and Hephaistos. xX^arat, ol 3 POVKO\OI, ol 8t ffv^iZrai, ol 

12. irapaSeCYp-ara is of course not put S /ccunjXot, ol5 ep/j.rjvtes, ol 8t KV^epvrjrat. 

for elxovas, as Proklos would have it, but The discrepancy arises from the fact that 

signifies samples, specimens. there were actually three castes, the two 

23. TO TWV Icplwv y&'os] Plato's classi- higher being priests and warriors, and 

fication does not coincide with that given the lowest comprising men following 

in Herodotus n 164. The latter makes various occupations which are differently 

seven castes : ftm 5 Alyvrrluv eirra. yfrfa, enumerated by different authentic 

7 6 


[24 A 

TOOV Brjmovpyoov, OTI xaff avro CKCKTTOV aXX ?e OVK eirip,iyvvp.evov 
BrjfjLiovpyei, TO re TWV vofieeov Kal TO T<UV QrjpevTwv TO re TWV 
yewpywv' Kal Brj teal TO fjt,d^tfiov 761/0? yo-Orjo-ai TTOV Tyce dirb B 
Trdvrav Twv yevdnv Ke%(i)pio~/Mevov, ol? ovBev aXXo TrXrjv ra irepl TOV 
5 7ro\fiov VTTO TOV vbfiov TTpotreTd^Bij fjt,e\eiv' Ti Be r] 7779 oVX/crew? 
avTwv a)(<Ti<; d<Hri8(ov Kal BopaTwv, ofc rjpels irpwTOi TWV Trepl TTJV 
1 A<riav u>Tr\icr^eda, r/J? ^eoO KaOdtrep ev eKeivois rot? roTrof? Trap TrpajTOi? evBei^afievrjs. TO 8' av Trepl T^? <f>povijo-(o<;, opa? 
TTOV TOV vopov TTJBe ocrrjv eTTtfieXeiav eVotJ/craTO 1 evBvs KOT 

frep TC TOV icoa^ov aTravTa, 


Trpo? C 


vyieiav, CK TOVTWV Oeiwv OVTQJV ei? ra dvOpanriva dvevpwv, c<ra re 
Tou'rot? eTrerai na0rj/j.aTa trdvTa KTija-afievo^. TavTrjv ovv 
Tore %vfj,Trao-av TTJV BiaKoo-prjo-iv Kal trviTa^iv -f] ^ec-9 Trporepou? 
? BiaKO<rfJ,ija-ao~a KaTyKitrev, eK\e^a^iinj TOV TOTTOV ev o5 76- 
, TTJV evKpao-lav TWV a>pv ev avTat KaTiBovo~a, on <f>povi- 
dvBpas otcroi' are ovv <t\07roXe/40? re Kal (f)i\6cro(f)o<; 
1} deb? ovo~a TOV Trpoo-^epeo-raTou? avTrj fj,e\\ovTa oio-etv TOTTOV D 
dvBpa<f, TOVTOV K\eafj,evrj TrpduTov KaTwKiaer. cpKeiTe Br) ovv 


to T TrdvTas dvOpwTrovs i^Trep/Se/ST/AcoTe? apeTfj, Kaddirep eto9 jevvij- 
/xara Kal TraiBevfiaTa BedSv oWa9. TroXXa fiev ovv V/MCOV Kal ytte- 
TJ79 TroXetu? TgBe yeypanfj.eva 6avfj,deTai, irdvTwv 76 

0i)pcvruv : TO omittit S. 

20 irdvTas : irapa. vdvras A. 

i. OVK tiri|UYvvjMvov] i.e. each mind- 
ed his own business, like the citizens of 
Plato's model republic. 

6. TWV irtpl TI^V 'Aa-iav] Egypt was 
commonly regarded in Plato's time as 
belonging to Asia rather than Africa. 
All Africa was indeed often regarded as 
part of Asia ; but that Plato distinguished 
them is made clear below in 24 E. 

8. TO 8' av ircpl rfjs <|>povnVcws] Hav- 
ing described the ordinances relating to 
externals he now proceeds to the training 
of the mind. 

10. ircpC T TOV KoVjiov] The meaning 
of this curiously involved and complex 
sentence seems to be this. The lawgiver, 
beginning with the study of the nature of 
the universe, which is divine, deduced 

from thence principles of practical use for 
human needs, applying them to divina- 
tion and medicine and the other sciences 
therewith connected. The peculiarity of 
the law in fact consisted in basing its 
precepts concerning practical arts such 
as medicine (avffpuviva) upon universal 
truths of nature (Beta), /x^xpt navTiK-fis, 
i.e. bringing its deductions down to divi- 
nation. In the words ^c TOVTUV Oduv 
ovrtav eij TO. avdpuirii>a wevpuv we cer- 
tainly have a difficulty of construction. 
I take the meaning to be 'from these 
divine studies (i.e. of the *60>toj) having 
invented them (^OLVTIK^ and larpiic/i) for 
human needs '. But the lack of an object 
to cti'eupuH' and the construction of /j TO 
a*9p<awufo. are alike unsatisfactory ; and I 


D] TIMAIO2. 77 

tion of the craftsmen, that each kind plies its own craft by itself 
and mingles not with another ; and the class of shepherds and 
of hunters and of husbandmen are set apart ; and that of the 
warriors too you have surely noticed is here sundered from all 
the other classes ; for on them the law enjoins to study the art 
of war and nought else. Furthermore there is the fashion of 
their arming with spears and shields, wherewith we have been 
the first men in Asia to arm ourselves ; for the goddess taught 
this to us, as she did first to you in that country of yours. 
Again as regards knowledge, you see how careful our law is in 
its. first principles, investigating the laws of nature till it arrives 
at divination and medicine, the object of which is health, draw- 
ing from these divine studies lessons useful for human needs, 
and adding to these all the sciences that are connected there- 
withal. With all this constitution and order the goddess estab- 
lished you when she founded your nation first; choosing out 
the spot in which ye were born because she saw that the mild 
temperament of its seasons would produce the highest intelli- 
gence in its people. Seeing then that the goddess was a lover 
of war and of wisdom, she selected the spot that should bring 
forth men likest to herself, and therein she first founded your 
race. Thus then did ye dwell governed by such laws as I have 
described, ay and even better still, surpassing all men in ex- 
cellence, as was meet for them that were offspring and nurslings 
of gods. 

Many and mighty are the deeds of your city recorded here 
for the marvel of men ; but one is there which for greatness and 

much doubt whether the text is sound. from the treatise of Hippokrates de aerc 
The whole sentence reads strangely in a locis et aquis : ct. especially fvp^fisyapfirl 
passage of such singular literary brilliance TO irX^os -nfc x^pW rrj <f>vcri d.Ko\ovOevi>Ta. 
as this chapter. With regard to HCLVTIK^ ical efSea rlav dvOpwiruv /cal TOI)J rpowovs. 
Kal larpiKTJs Proklos observes that the Kiihn vol. I p. 567. Compare too Flo- 
Egyptians combined these two profes- tinos ennead mis d.Ko\ov6eiv Si rotj TO- 
sions. irots ov fjjovov TO. &\\a tpvra. re Kal fyo, 
15. 4>povi|iwT<Tovs avSpas] Compare oXXa Kal avOpunruiv d8ij re Kal Hfy46t] Kal 
Laws 641 c, Menexenus 237 c foil. The xpoas Kal Ovfiods Kal tviOu/jdas, ^TrmjSeu- 
Euripidean del 6ia\afj.irpoTa.Tov fialvovrts /terra Te KO.I JjOr}. 

afipusalOtpos will occur to every one. How 21. iravrwv -y* H v ^ v l The amount of 

much importance was attached by Greek speculation and misdirected ingenuity 

medical science to the influence of climate which Plato's story of Atlantis has 

upon the nature of a people may be gathered awakened surpasses belief. Plato is our 

7 8 TIAATHNOS [24 D- 

prjv $v vTrepexei fieyeOet KCU apery- \eyet yup rd yeypaaaeva, ocrrjv E 
r) 7roXt<? vfiwv 7rav(re Tore Bvva/J.iv vfipet, Tropevouevyv aaa eVl 
trdo-av E.vpcoTrr}v Kal *Ao~iav, egaffev opurjOelcrav etc rov 'ArXazm- 
KOV 7T\dyov<f. rare yap Tropfvo-iftov rjv TO e/eet ireXayos' vrjcrov 

5 yap irpo rov oro/iaTO? el^ev, o Ka\eirai, <<? fare vfteis, HpaK\eov<; 
<rrfj\af y Be 1/770-05 afia Aifivys r t v teal 'Ao-t'a5 fiel^wv, f% r/9 eVt^a- 
TOI> eVi Tfl5 a\Xa? i/r)o-of9 rot? rore eyiyvero Tropevopevois, etc Be 
rwv vij<ra)v eVt TJ)J/ Karavnicpv rraa-av rjTreipov rrjv irepl rov d\r)0i- 2o A 
vov etceivov irovrov. rdSe fJiev ydp, 6Va eVro? rov aro^aro^ ou 

10 \eyopev, <f>aiverai \ifj.ijv vrevov riva fywv i<r7r\ovv' eicetvo Be 
treXayof OVTW? TJ re Trepie^ovffa avro yfj TravreKfUs [a\?;p&)5j 
opOorar av \eyoiro rjiretpos. ev Be Brj ry 'A.r\avriBi vrjo-q) ravrp 
fjieydXr) a-vve<rrr) Kal Oavfiaa-rr) Bvva/j,i<; fiaaiXewv, Kparov&a /J,ev 
aTrao-775 T^? vrjcrov, iro\\u>v Be d\\wv vrjcrwv Kal pepwv rrjs -JTreipoV 

15 7rpo<? Be rovroi<; eri rwv eVro? rfjBe Ai/3vr)s p,ev ^PX OV ^XP 1 ^P ? B 
AiyvTrrov, T^? Be Ei'peoTJ^;? ^XP 1 r ^ v pp r n v ^ a ^- avrrj Bfj irao-a %vva- 
dpoiffffelffa et? ev rj Bvva/jLK rov re Trap Vfuv Kal rov Trap Kal 
rov evrb<j rov <7To/iaro5 irdvra roirov fiia irore. eTrexeiptjo'ev opuf) 
Bov\ovo~0ai. Tore ovv vu<av, to SoXwi^, rrjs TrcXew? r} Bvvafi,i<; 615 

10 airavras dvdpwirov^ Bia<j>avrj<i dperfj re Kal poafip eyevero' rravrwv 
yap Trpocrraa-a ein/ru^t'a Kal re^yai^ oarat Kara iroKefiov, rd fiev 
ru>v 'E\\r)va>v rjyovjji,evr), rd 8' avrr) fiovwOeiva e'f dvdyKtjs rwv C 

5 KaXtVcu...(Ti7Xat: Ka\ftTt...<rTri\as AHSZ. n dXij^ws crash A. ego inclusi. 

only authority for the legend : there is explorers took over two years for their 

no trace of confirmation from any inde- enterprise and went ashore each year to 

pendent source. It appears to me im- raise a crop. The view that Atlantis did 

possible to determine whether Plato has actually exist and disappear, as Plato 

invented the story from beginning to end describes, receives, I believe, no counte- 

ppSi'ws \lyirjrrlovs ical o?ro5a7roi)s ai> t6t\y nance from geology. The wild absurdity 

X&yoi/s iroiet or whether it really more of most of the theories on the subject may 

or less represents some Egyptian legend be gathered from Martin's learned and 

brought home by Solon. Stallbaum sup- amusing dissertation. There is hardly a 

poses that the ancient Egyptians really country on the face of the globe, not only 

had some information of the existence of from China to Peru, but from New Zea- 

America. But this is entirely incredible, land to Spitzbergen, including such an 

considering the limited powers of navi- eminently unpromising locality as Pales- 

gation possessed by even the boldest sea- tine, which has not been confidently iden- 

farers of those times. The greatest voyage tified with the Platonic Atlantis. It can 

on record was the circumnavigation of only be said that such speculations are 

Africa related by Herodotus IV 42: but that deivou K<d tiriirbvov Kal ov ird.vv evrvxovs 

is mere child's play to crossing and recross- avSpos. 
ing the Atlantic without a compass. The 4. iropv<rinov] Plato means that since 

25 c] TIMAIO2. 79 

nobleness surpasses all the rest. For our chronicles tell what a 
power your city quelled of old, that marched in wanton inso- 
lence upon all Europe and Asia together, issuing yonder from 
the Atlantic ocean. For in those days the sea there could be 
crossed, since it had an island before the mouth of the strait 
which is called, as ye say, the pillars of Herakles. Now this 
island was greater than Libya and Asia together ; and there- 
from there was passage for the sea-farers of those times to the 
other islands, and from the islands to all the opposite continent 
which bounds that ocean truly named. For these regions that 
lie within the strait aforesaid seem to be but a bay having a 
narrow entrance ; but the other is ocean verily, and the land 
surrounding it may with fullest truth and fitness be named a 
continent. In this island Atlantis arose a great and marvellous 
might of kings, ruling over all the island itself, and many other 
islands, and parts of the mainland; and besides these, of the 
lands east of the strait they governed Libya as far as Egypt, and 
Europe to the borders of Etruria. So all this power gathered 
itself together, and your country and ours and the whole region 
within the strait it sought with one single swoop to enslave. 
Then, O Solon, did the power of your city shine forth in all 
men's eyes glorious in valour and in strength. For being fore- 
most upon earth in courage and the arts of war, sometimes she 
was leader of the Hellenes, sometimes she stood alone perforce, 

the Atlantic was thickly studded with 6. Aipvrjs fy Kal'Ao-Cas |AC(<DV] In 

large islands, it was possible for mariners estimating the size of Atlantis allowance 

to pass from one to another by easy stages must be made for Plato's imperfect know- 

until they reached the transatlantic conti- ledge of the magnitude of Asia and Africa. 

nent, without the necessity of a long sea 8. r^v KaravTiKpw ird<rav ^irtipov] 

voyage. We know from Thucydides that Martin suggests that the notion of a 

even the passage across the Ionian sea transatlantic continent may have arisen 

was regarded as formidable ; we may rea- from the early conception of Ocean as a 

dily conceive then that many halting river, implying a further shore. 

places would be required to make the 20. ITOIVTWV yo-P irpocrrdcra] The un- 

Atlantic ocean Tropev<Ti/j.ov. mistakable similarity between the posi- 

5. TOV o-TOnaros] i.e. the strait of tion of the legendary Athens in the 

Gibraltar. Atlantine war and that of the historical 

8 Ka\iTai] The mss. give KaXeirai Athens in the Persian invasion indicates 

...ariJXaj, which is usually corrected into that if Plato is using an ancient legend, 

KaXeire. But owing to the tautology thus he has freely adapted it to his own ends : 

produced, I prefer on Stallbaum's sug- for the existence of such a coincidence in 

gestion to retain KaXetrat and read orT/Xai. the original is highly improbable. 



[25 c 

<i\\o)V d-jroffTavrwv, eVt roi)? ecr^arou? dfaicopevT) tcii'Buvovs, icpa- 
riovrcav rpofraia (rrr)cre, rov<f Be iirjirw BeBov\Q)- 
Sov\a)0f}vai, TOVS o aXXov9, o<roi 

rr(Ta<Ta [lev 

ero9 pwv 

6v(i)<; 'diravra^ tj\ev0ep<i)a'ev. 

/cat KaraKKvaptov yevopevcov, 

fiepas ica VVKTOS ^ae-Tr eVeX#oi/ 0-775, TO re Trap' i5/ui> /j.d%ifj.ov D 
Tray dQpcov eBv /card 7^?, i^ re 'ArXai/Tt? i/^o-o? axravTox; Kara rf)<; 
0a\drrr)<; &v<ra ijcfravio-drj' Bio ical vvv airopov xal d&iepevvijrov 
yeyove TO eet TreXayo?, trrfKov xdpra {Spa^eo? e/iTroSwr OVTO?, ov 
10 T; I/^O-Q? io/jLevr) irapea-^ero. 

IV. Ta /iej/ S^ prjdevra, <a 'ZwKpares, VTTO rov TraXatoO Kpt- 
T/OU xraT* dicorjv rrjv SoXtwvo?, tu9 <7fi/TO/Lt&>5 eiTreiv, a/c^/coa?- E 
Xeyoi/TO? 8e 8^ X^ 1 * <ro ^ T^pt TroXtTeta? /cat TCOV av8p<av, oO? 
edavfjia^ov aj/a/it/z.i'^o'/co/xei'o? avTa a t'Oi' Xe76>, tcaravooov, 
? e/c Tti/o? 
etTrev. 01 
<ydp ovj^ t'/cai/oS? 

15 a? 


o0v ra-^v 
20 07re/3 ev 


TOI? ftov\ij(ia<riv vTrodea-Qai, TOVTOV 
OUTO> 8, fcaOaTre 08' etTre, ^5 T6 

ot//c a?ro (TKOTTOV ^vv^vk^Qf]^ rd -rroXXa 
e^ov\i]0r)v Trapa-^pfj/jia eiTreiv Bid 26 A 

evevorjcra ovv, OTI ^pewv eirj 
irdvra dva\aj36vTa \eyeiv oi/rw?. 
<roi rdTTira^Oevra ^^65, 7770^61/09, 
fj,eyi<TTOv epyov, \6yov Tivd Trpeirovra 
rjp.d<j evTroprjcreiv. 

: i\0owrris Z. 

6. TJ T irop' vjiiv |u>xi|iov] We 
must suppose the chief fury of the earth- 
quake was spent on Athens itself, so 
that all the more cultivated and intelli- 
gent citizens, who, as in Plato's own re- 
public, included the fighting men, were 
destroyed ; while the Attic race was con- 
tinued by the rude inhabitants of country 

8. fiiropov Ko.1 dSicptvv^Tov] Ari- 
stotle agrees, though assigning a different 
reason, about the shallowness of the At- 
lantic near Gibraltar : cf. meteorologiea n i 
354" 11 TO. 5' {w (TTijXwv /Spax^o n^v 8ta 
rbv irr)\6v, dirvoa 5' iarlv ws Iv Koi\y Tijj 
Oa\a.TTT)s ovffijs. uffirtp ovv ical Kara, julpot 
iieTwv ty^ui'oliroTa.fjiol <(>aivwrai ptovrt j, 
ovru xal rljs o\i/j 7^5 i* rS>v vifrrjXoTtpuv 
TOW Tpiy &PKTOV r6 ptvfia ylvercu. . TO 


*\ei<TTOv, wore rd fitv Sta TTJV (K\vaiv 
ov (taffta, TO. 5' ?w ire\<ifn fia.0ta. 
/xaXW. Aristotle's notion was that the 
more northerly parts of the globe were 
higher than the southern : hence the 
marine currents flowed southward car- 
rying with them quantities of sand which, 
being deposited off the coasts of southern 
Europe, silted up the entrance to the 

g. injXov Kapra Ppa^os] I believe 
this reading to be perfectly correct, al- 
though I am unable to produce an exact 
parallel. /3pox^ was the regular word 
for shoals : cf. Herodotus II 102 OaXaayav 
OVK&TI irXwr^v OTTO fipaxtuv : also IV 1 70, 
and Plutarch de genio Socratis 22 dpcua 
revdyit ical ppa\^a. The peculiarity in 
our passage is of course that /3pa;^oj is 

26 A] TIMAIOS. 8 1 

when the rest fell away from her; and after being brought into 
the uttermost perils, she vanquished the invaders and triumphed 
over them : and the nations that were not yet enslaved she pre- 
served from slavery; while the rest of us who dwell this side the 
pillars of Herakles, all did she set free with ungrudging hand. 
But in later time, after there had been exceeding great earth- 
quakes and floods, there fell one day and night of destruction; 
and the warriors in your land all in one body were swallowed up 
by the earth, and in like manner did the island Atlantis sink 
beneath the sea and vanish away. Wherefore to this day the 
ocean there is impassable and unsearchable, being blocked by 
very shallow shoals, which the island caused as she settled down. 
IV. You have heard this brief statement, Sokrates, of what 
the ancient Kritias reported that he heard from Solon : and 
when you were speaking yesterday about the polity and the 
men whom you described, I was amazed as I called to mind the 
story I have just told you, remarking how by some miraculous 
coincidence most of your account agreed unerringly with the 
description of Solon. I was unwilling however to say anything 
at the moment, for after so long a time my memory was at 
fault. I conceived therefore that I must not speak until I had 
thoroughly gone over the whole story by myself. Accordingly 
I was quick to accept the task you imposed on us yesterday, 
thinking that for the most arduous part of all such undertakings, 
I mean supplying a story fitly corresponding to our intentions, 

an adjective agreeing with mjXou. But wealth as painted by Sokrates and ancient 

though this use does not seem to occur Athens as described in Solon's legend, 

elsewhere, I see no conclusive reason He therefore taxed his memory to re- 

for rejecting it here; and certainly no cover every detail of the history, thinking 

tolerable substitute has been offered for it would serve to fulfil Sokrates' wish to 

it. A gives /3a0^os, which is pointless: see his imaginary citizens brought into 

surely the question that would interest a life and action. Sokrates welcomes the 

sailor is how near the mud was to the suggestion; and it is agreed that Timaeus 

surface ; its depth he would regard with shall first expound the order of the uni- 

profound indifference. And there is little verse down to the creation of man, and 

more to be said for Stallbaum's suggestion that Kritias shall follow with his account 

rpax^oj. Accordingly I retain ir-rjXov KO.PTO. of the former Athenians and of their war 

fipaxtos in the sense of ' very shoaly mud '. with Atlantis. 

25 D 27 B, c. iv. Kritias proceeds 18. irtivra dvaXapovra] referring to 

to say that he was greatly struck by the the detailed account to be given in the 

resemblance between the ideal common- Critias. 

P. T. 6 

82 nAATHNOS [26 B- 

rovvBe dvefapov avra dvapifjivpo-KOfjLevos, aTreXOwv re vx^Bov n B 
irdvra eTTia-KOTraiv rrjs rvferos ave\af3ov. a? &ij roi, TO \eyopevov, 
rd iralBwv uadtj/uira 0avf4a<rrbv e%ei n p,i"rjp.elov. eyca yap, a 
fiev X^e? faova-a, OVK. av olB' el Bvvaijj.rjv d-rravra ev ^v^rj jra\iv 
5 \aftelv ravra be, a 7rd^"rro\vv %p6i'ov BiaKij/coa, iravrarcaai 
av ei rL /*6 avrwv SiaTrtyevyev. rjv fiev ovv fiera 
rjSovfj? KCU 7rat8t^5 Tore aKovop,eva, KOL rod Trpeo-ftvrov C 

fj,e BiBd<TKovro<f t ar' e/ioO 7roXXa/a<> 
uxne olov ejKavfj,ara dveKir\vrov 7/>a0^ 
10 KCU Brj KOI roicrBe ev6v<? eXeyov eaiflev avrd ravra, 'iva eviropolev 
\6yo)v per* e/ioO. vvv oiv, ovnep eveica iravra ravra. eiprjrai, 
\eyeiv elfil eroi/xo?, eo Sw/cparec, pr) povov ev /ce^aXat'ot? a'XX' 
axnrep rJKovaa icad' exaarov rovs Be TroXtra? ical rrjv TTC\IV, f)V 
'XJdes &$9 ev fj,v0<p Bipeiada av, vvv pereveyKovres eVt rd\r)0e<> D 
'5 Bevpo drjaopev a>s eKeivrjv rrjvBe ov<rav, teal roi9 7roXtVa9, 01)9 
Bievoov, (pija-opev eicetvov? TOV9 dXrjdivov^ elvai irpoyovow? r)p,u)V, 
01)9 eXeyev 6 ifptfa. Trdvrcos dp(j,6<rovcrt KOI OVK cnrqa6p.e6a Xe- 
yovres avrovs elvat, rovs ev T&> rare ovras "xpovtp' KOIVJJ Be Bta- 
\afj,/3dvovr e$ aTravres jreipaa'op.eOa TO irpeirov et9 Bvvafjiiv 0X9 
to e7reVa|'a9 aTroBovvat. cricoTrelv ovv Brj %p>j, to ^wicpares, el Kara 
vovv 6 \oyo<$ rjpJiv ovros, tf riva IT' aXXov avr avrov ^rjrrjreov. E 

Sfl. Kal rlv av, (a KptTta, /ioXXov dvrl rovrov fAeraXdpoi- 
fiev, 09 ry re Trapovo-rj T^9 ^eoO Ovcriq Bid rrjv olfceiorrjr' av TrpeVot 
fj,d\i(rra, TO TC /A^ TfkaaQkvta p,v6ov aXX' dXtjOivov \6yov elvai 
7 5 Trdfifieyd TTOV. 7ra9 7p /cat Trodev aXXoi9 dvevpr)crop,ev d<pe/j,evoi 
rovratv ; oJ/c e&riv, aXX' dyaOfj rv%r] ^pr) \eyeiv fiev i5/ia9, e/ie 
Se a^Tt T<oi> ^^69 \6ya)v vvv rj<j-v)^iav dyovra dvraKOveiv. 27 A 

KP. 2/forret 5} TJ^V Tc3v %eviwv <roi Biddeo-iv, <w S(^paT9, 7; 
eBoe yap rjpZv Tipaiov fiev, are ovra dcrrpovofAttccararov 

: airai'Ta. S. 7 iraidiicrjs : TratSias S. 14 yOv ante (j,ertveyi(6i>Tes 

omittunt SZ. 19 post dirai'rej inserit A roi>j dvdfxiiirovy. 

4. OVK av oI8' fl Svva(tit]v] For the 9. tyKavpara] For the methods of 

construction and position of &v see Euri- encaustic painting see Pliny Nat. Hist. 

pides A Ices tii 48, Medea 941. I have xxxv 149. 
not noted another instance in Plato. 14. JM} irXao-O^vro. p.v0ov] Cf. 21 A. 

7. irai.8i.KTJs] Stallbaum with very We must not bind Plato down too strictly 

slight ms. authority reads ireuSias, without to this affirmation. 

noticing any other reading: apparently 29. oVrpovoixiKwraTov] Not in the 

he failed to perceive that iraiSt^s was in popular sense merely, but in the sub- 

agreement with ridovyt. limated Platonic manner. 

27 A] TIMAIO2. 83 

we should be fairly well provided. So then, as Hermokrates 
said, as soon as ever I departed hence yesterday, I began to 
repeat the legend to our friends as I remembered it; and when 
I got home I recovered nearly the whole of it by thinking it 
over at night. How true is the saying that what we learn in 
childhood has a wonderful hold on the memory. Of what I 
heard yesterday I know not if I could call to mind the whole : 
but though it is so very long since I heard this tale, I should be 
surprised if a single point in it has escaped me. It was with 
much boyish delight that I listened at the time, and the 
old man was glad to instruct me, (for I asked a great many 
questions) ; so that it is indelibly fixed in my mind, like those 
encaustic pictures which cannot be effaced. And I narrated the 
story to the rest the first thing in the morning, that they might 
share my affluence of words. Now therefore, to return to the 
object of all our conversation, I am ready to speak, Sokrates, 
not only in general terms, but entering into details, as I heard it. 
The citizens and the city which you yesterday described to us 
as in a fable we will transfer to the sphere of reality and to 
our own country, and we will suppose that ancient Athens is 
your ideal commonwealth, and say that the citizens whom you 
imagined are those veritable forefathers of ours of whom the 
priest spoke. They will fit exactly, and there will be nothing 
discordant in saying that they were the men who lived in those 
days. And dividing the work between us we will all endeavour 
to render an appropriate fulfilment of your injunctions. So you 
must consider, Sokrates, whether this story of ours satisfies you, 
or whether we must look for another in its stead. 

Sokrates, How could we change it for the better, Kritias ? 
It is specially appropriate to this festival of the goddess, owing 
to its connexion with her ; while the fact that it is no fictitious 
tale but a true history is surely a great point. How shall we 
find other such citizens if we relinquish these ? It cannot be : 
so with Fortune's favour do you speak on, while I in requital for 
my discourse of yesterday have in my turn the privilege of 
listening in silence. 

Kritias. Now consider, Sokrates, how we proposed to dis- 
tribute your entertainment. We resolved that Timaeus, who is 
the best astronomer among us, and who has most of all made it 


84 HAATHNOS [27 A- 

teal irepl (frvveajs TOV TravTos elBevai fid\io~Ta epyov 

fj,evov, TrpwTov \eyeiv dp-^ofievov diro T/?9 TOV KOO-JJLOV 
Te\evrdv Be el<t dvOpatTrwv <pvo~iv e/u,e Be fierd TOVTOV, &)9 irapa 
[lev TOVTOV BeBeyfJievov dvdpanrovs ro3 \6yw yeyovoTas, irapa o~ov 

5 Be TreTraiBevfjLevovs BiafapovTa)? avTWV Tivds, /cara 8) TOV 2oXcoi>o9 B 
\6yov T Kai vofiov elo-ayayovTa avTovs 009 et? StAcacrra? 7/ia9 
7roir)<rai TroXtra? T//? TTO\&)? T^<r8e co? tVras TOI)? rore 'Adrjvaiovs, 
ov<f eprjvvaev a^ai/et? oi/ra? ; raJi/ tepa'V ypap,p,aTwv <pr)H>r), TO, 
\otird Be 0)9 7re/)t 7ro\tTt3y /fal 'AOrjvattov OVTWV 17877 TroielaOat, 

10 TOW Xo70t>9. 

SO. TeXe(09 re /cat Xa/iTrpco? eot/ca ai/TaTroX^eo-^at T?}y 
\6ya)v o-Tiao~iv. <rov ovv epyov \eyeiv dv, <a Tiftaie, eirj TO 
TOVTO, <U9 eoitcev, TriKa\ecravTa Kara VO/JLOV 0ovs. 

V. TI. 'AXX', <w Sft)/3aT6?, TOWTO 76 8^ 7rai/re9, o<rot /rat C 

*S /cara /Spa^d Gux^poavvris fieTe^ovcrtv, ITTI TTCLVTOS opfifj nai cr/j-iicpov 

/cai /j,eyd\ov trpd'yp.aTo^ deov dei TTOV Ka\ov<riv 7?/ia? Be Toi/9 Trepi 

TOV TravTos \6yovs jroielo-ffai Try /ieXXoi^ra?, 77 yeyovev rj fcal dyeves 

effTiv, el fir) TravTaTraa-t TrapaXXaTTO/zey, dvdytcij Oeovs re ical 

Oeds 7ritca\ov/jievovs ev%e(r0ai irdvra /cara vovv etceivois pev 

^ 20 fj,d\i crTa, TrofjLva)<; Be rjfuv eiTrelv. real T pev Tcepi Oewv TavTy 

* TrapaKeKXtjcrdo)' TO B' y/jiTepov TrapaicXrjTeov, f) paGT 1 dv vp,els D 

fj,ev fj,d6oiT, eyw Be y Biavood[j,ai /iaXitrr' dv Trepl TV 

v E 1 o-Ttv ovv Brj KO.T fj,rjv B6av irpwTov BiaipeTeov TaBc TI TO 

3 perk TOVTOV: TOVTWV A. 5 STJ pro 5 reposui suadente S. 

6 ij/xaj: vfj.a.1 HZ. n efi? omittit A. ante u Tfywue ponit S. 

3. 4>vo-iv seems to have its old 27 C 29 D, r. v. Timaeus, after due 
sense of 'generation'. invocation of heavenly aid, thus begins 

4. TW Xo-yw yeyovoTas] cf. Republic his exposition. The first step is to dis- 
361 B TOV oliccuov irap' afirov iffTwpev ry tinguish the eternally existing object of 
Xoytf), avdpa aTrXouv Kalyevvaiov, also 534 D thought and reason from the continually 
Trcuoas ovj T^> Xo'7<f) Tp^^ets re >cal TOI- fleeting object of opinion and sensation, 
fietfeis, ef irorc ^/ryy T/J^KHS. To which class does the material uni- 

5. Kara 8^] Stallbaum's suggestion verse belong, to Being or Becoming? 
of reading 8ij for St appears to me to To Becoming, because it is apprehen- 
restore the true structure of the sentence. sible by the senses. All that comes to 

6. XOYOV TC Kal vofiovj i.e. accept- be comes from some cause; so therefore 
ing the statement of Solon that they were does the universe. Also it must be a 
Athenian citizens, we formally admit their likeness of something. Now what is 
claim to citizenship in the mode pre- modelled on the eternal must needs be 
scribed by his law. fair, but what is modelled on the created 

D] TIMAIO2. 85 

his business to understand universal nature, should speak first, 
beginning with the origin of the universe, and should end with 
the birth of mankind : and that I should follow, receiving from 
him mankind brought to being in theory, and from you a por- 
tion of them exceptionally cultivated ; and that in accordance 
with Solon's laws, no less than with his statement, I should 
introduce them before our tribunal and make them our fellow- 
citizens, as being the Athenians of bygone days, whom the 
declaration of the sacred writings has delivered from their 
oblivion ; and thenceforward we shall speak as if their claim to 
Athenian citizenship were fairly established. 

Sokrates. Ample and splendid indeed, it seems, will be the 
banquet of discourse which I am to receive in my turn. So it 
would seem to be your business to speak next, Timaeus, after 
you have duly invoked the gods. 

V. Timaeus. Yes indeed, Sokrates, that is what all do who 
possess the slightest share of judgment ; at the outset of every 
work, great or small, they always call upon a god : and seeing 
that we are going to enter on a discussion of the universe, how 
far it is created or perchance uncreate, unless we are altogether 
beside ourselves, we must needs invoke the gods and goddesses 
and pray above all that our discourse may be pleasing in their 
sight, next that it may be consistent with itself. Let it suffice 
then thus to have called upon the gods ; but we must call upon 
ourselves likewise to conduct the discourse in such a way that 
you will most readily comprehend me, and I shall most fully carry 
out my intentions in expounding the subject that is before us. 

First then in my judgment this distinction must be made. 

is not fair. The universe is most fair, The first eight chapters of Timaeus' 

therefore it was modelled on the eternal. discourse, extending to 40 D, deal with 

And in dealing with the eternal type and the universe as a whole; after which he 

the created image, we must remember proceeds to its several portions, 

that the words we use of each must 11. TO 8' i]|ircpov irapaKXryrfov] i e. 

correspond to their several natures : those after appealing to the gods for aid, we 

which deal with the eternally existent must appeal to ourselves to put forth 

must be so far as possible sure and true all our energies : heaven helps those who 

and incontrovertible ; while with those help themselves. 

which treat of the likeness we must be 22. fl Siavoovjiai] Stallbaum proposes 

content if they arc likely. To this So- to read a. 
krates assents. 

*\ i, 

86 HAATHNOS [27 D 

ov del, yevecriv 8e OVK e^oi>, fcal rl TO yiyvoaevov pev del, ov oe 
ovoeTTOTf. TO pev 8>) vorfffei p.Ta \6yov 7rept\r}7rr6v, del Kara 28 A 
ravrd cv, TO 8' av o6r) UCT' alffOrj crews d\6yov oo^acrTov, yiyvo- 
fjievov Kal aTToXkii/jievov, oW<w5 8e ovoeTTOTC ov. TTUV 8e av TO 
K yiyv6fj,vov VTT 1 aiTiov TIVOS e dvdyKijs yiyvecrOai' Traim yap 
dovvaTOV X W P^ a * Tl/oi; yeveo-iv a-^etv. orov fjtev ovv av 6 Brj- 

*\ i, fJLlOVpyOS 7T/30? TO KOTO. TaVTO, ")(OV /3\7rCi)V al, TOIOVTO) TlVl 

s TrapaSeiyfAaTi, Trjv ISeav Kal Bvva/jLiv avrov aTrep- 
<yd%T)Tai, Ka\ov e^ dvdyKr)*; ovrtas d7roTe\lcrdai irav ov 8' av B 
10 tt? TO yeyovos, yevvrjTw TrapaSery/iGm Trpofr^pfw/tie^o?, ov Ka\ov. 
6 &r) Tra? ovpavos rj /foa/zo? rj Kal a\\o o TI TTOTG o^o/zafd/Ltevo? 
p.d\io~r av Se^otTO, TovO* ypJiv wvofiao'dw cnceTTTeov 8' ovv irepl 
avTov Trp&Tov, 'oirep inrofcetTai irepl TravTos ev dp%fj Belv crKO-rreiv, 
TToTepov ffv del, yevecrew; dp^rjv e%wv ovSefiiav, 17 yeyovev, air 
15 dp-)(fi<; TIVOS dpd/j,evo<>. yeyovev oparos yap avrTO? Te eVrt /cat 
e")(wv, iravra Se Ta TotavTa alcrd^Ta, TO, S' alcrdijTa, B6rj 

fiT alcrBrjaews, yiyvopeva Kal yevvrjTd ecfrdwr). TOJ 8' c 
av yevopevti) (frapev vir aiTtov TWOS dvdyKrjv elvai yeve&Oai. TOV 
fjiev ovv TroirjTrjv Kal iraTepa TOvSe TOV TravTos evpelv T epyov Kal 
10 eipovTa et? Tcavras dSvvaTov \eyetv Tooe 8' ovv irdXiv eVfo-/ce- 

i. ri> |iv 8^ voTjo-ti] voT/ffts and 5o^a customary reverent diffidence in naming 

denote the faculties, \6yot and oto-^crtj the divine : cf. Aeschylus Agamemnon 

the processes. The language of the pre- 160 Zei5s, 6'<rm iror' toriv, el rod' aim? 

sent passage precisely agrees with the <j>i\ov /ce/cX^yu^Vi TOVTO viv irpoffevvtiru. 

account given at the end of the fifth book The sentence becomes an anacoluthon 

of the Republic. owing to the parenthetical words 17 iced 

5. W alrfov TWOS] So Philebus 16 a\\o...wvofj.dffOu. 

E 8pa >4p et act 5oce avaytcaiov dvai 14. nxSrtpov fy a(] i.e. whether it 

jrdvra ret yi.yv6fi.tva. did Tiva atriav ylyve- belongs to things eternal or to things 

060.1. Only the Cvrws 6v, the changeless temporal. It cannot be too carefully 

and abiding, is a cause to itself and needs borne in mind that there is throughout no 

no oWa from without : the yiyv6fj.tov question whatsoever of the beginning of 

has no principle of causation in itself and the universe in time. The creation in 

must find the source of its becoming in time is simply part of the figurative 

some ulterior force. representation : it is /car' imvoiav only. 

8. n]v IS^av Kal 8vvap.iv] Neither In Plato's highly poetical and allegorical 

of these words has a technical meaning, exposition a logical analysis is repre- 

though dtivamv is here not so very far sented as a process taking place in time, 

removed from the Aristotelian sense. and to reach his true meaning we must 

iStav = the form and fashion of it, strip off the veil of imagery. He con- 

its function or quality. ceived the universe to be a certain evo- 

u. TJ Ka\ oXXo] The universe is a lution of absolute thought; and the 

living god: Plato therefore uses the several elements in this evolution he 

28 c] TIMAIO2. 87 

What is that which is eternally and has no becoming, and again 
what is that which comes to be but is never ? The one is com- 
prehensible by thought with the aid of reason, ever changeless ; 
the other opinable by opinion with the aid of reasonless sensa- 
tion, becoming and perishing, never truly existent. Now all 
that comes to be must needs be brought into being by some 
cause : for it is impossible for anything without a cause to 
attain to birth. Of whatsoever thing then the Artificer, looking 
ever to the changeless and using that as his model, works out 
the design and function, all that is so accomplished must needs 
be fair : but if he look to that which has come to be, using the 
created as his model, the work is not fair. Now as to the whole 
heaven or order of the universe for whatsoever name is most 
acceptable to it, be it so named by us we must first ask con- 
cerning it the question which lies at the outset of every inquiry, 
whether did it exist eternally, having no beginning of generation, 
or has it come into being, starting from some beginning? It 
has come into being : for it can be seen and felt and has body ; 
and all such things are sensible, and sensible things, apprehen- 
sible by opinion with sensation, belong, as we saw, to becoming 
and creation. We say that what has come to be must be 
brought into being by some cause. Now the maker and father 
of this All it were a hard task to find, and having found him, it 

represents as a succession of events. a TravSoKfiov for all views they had a 

Such criticism then as that of Aris- difficulty in otherwise bestowing. As to 

totle in de caelo I x is wholly irrele- the past tense rjv de(, Proklos very justly 

vant: he treats a metaphysical concep- observes e2 d TO yv oti (prffft irpof\duv 

tion from a merely physical point of olKeiov elvai TO?S alwvlou, eu e? raparrta- 

view. Stobaeus eel. I 450 says llvOa- 6ai' irpbycLprrj^dtapOpwo'eus Zirerat ryffw- 

yopas <pi]ffl yfvvrfrov KO.T' eirivoiav TJV rjOelq.. The said SidpOpuffis is at 37 E 38 R. 

KotT/j-ov, ov Kara xpovov : and presently he 19. tvptiv rt tpyov] Proklos says this 

ascribes the same view to Herakleitos. is a warning against superficially seeking 

Whether these philosophers really held our dpxh in the physical forces which 

that opinion there seems no means of served the old (puffioXoyot. It may be 

determining: but since in the immediate observed also that, were we to accept the 

context Stobaeus assigns to Pythagoras 3i7/uou/ry6s literally, Plato would surely 

some distinctively Platonic notions, we not have used such language in referring 

may pretty fairly infer that the creation to so simple and familiar a conception as 

of the world icar' tirivoiav was one of a personal creator of the universe ; but if 

the many Platonic doctrines which were the Sr/fjuovpybs is but a mythical repre- 

foisted by the later doxographers upon sentative of a metaphysical dpxrf, the 

Pythagoras, whose school served tliem as justice of the remark is evident. 



[28 c 

Trreov rrepl avrov, 77/309 rrorepov r<av TrapaBeiy/j-drav 6 retcrai- 
vou,evo<i avrov ajreipyd^ero, rrorepov irpos TO Kara ravra Kai 29 A 
<w<rai;TO)9 %ov rj 777309 TO 76701/0?. 4 fiev Brj /ca\d? e&riv oBe 6 
#007109 o re Br)fj.iovpyo<; dyaOos, ofj\ov a>9 777)09 TO diBiov eft\errev 

5 el Be o /iT/8' elrrelv nvl Befits, 777*09 TO 76701/09. rravrl Brj o-a<>? 
oVt 777309 TO diBiov 6 fiev yap /caXXtaTO? rwv yeyovorwv, o B" 
dpivros r<av alrlwv. ovrco Brj yeyevrjuevo? 717309 TO A,O7&> Kal 
<f)povt<rei 7repi\rjTrrov Kal Kara ravra e%ov BeSTjaiovpyrjrai' rov- 
rwv 8e vrrap'vovrwv av rrao~a dvdyKr) rovSe rov KOCTUOV eiKova B 

10 Tti/o9 flvai. ueyi<rrov Brj Trai/TO? dpj;a<rdai Kara $vaiv dp^rjv. 
w8e ovv rrepi re elicovos Kal rrepl rov irapaSeiyfiaros avrfj<i Bio- 
pi<rreov, &5? dpa TOI)? \070f9, wvrrep elaiv e^rjytjTai, rovrwv avrdov 
Kal j*vyyvei<; ovras. rov fiev ovv /JLOVI/J.OV Kal /3e/3ai'ou Kal fiera 
vov Kara<f)avov<> poviuovs Kal dfieraTrrwrovs, Kad' 'QGOV [0^0^] T6 

15 dv\eyKroi<; jrpoaijKei \6yoi? elvat, Kal aKivrjrois, rovrov Set prjBev 
eXXeiireiv TOI)? Be rov ?rpo9 uev eKelvo aTreiKacrdevros, oi/T09 Be C 
eiKovos, eiKoras dva \cyov re eKeivcov 6Wa9* o ri rrep Trpds yevetriv 
ovaia, rovro Trpos rrianv dXyOeia. eav ovv, w ^WKpares, iroXkd 

3 irpbs ri> yeyovos: rb omittit A. 8 Kal ante *carA omittit A. 14 KO.&' 

Sffov olov re AZ. /ca0' 8<rov ol6v re Kal H. /cai Ka6' 8<rov oluv re S. inclusi olov. 
s : aie\^7cToi;s et mox \6yovs et O.KIVJITOVS S. Set: 5^ S. 

on the part of the creator ; it is the 
working out of an inevitable law. 

6. KaXXurros TWV y e Y ov TWV ] i- e> 
there is nothing in the universe which, 
taken by itself, is so fair as the universe 
as a whole. 

g. cixova nvAs ttvai] This leads the 
way to the question raised in 30 C. 
Seeing that the creator looked to a pat- 
tern in framing the universe, it follows 
that the universe is a copy of something ; 
and we have to inquire what that is 
whereof it is the copy. Cicero renders 
these words ' simulacrum aeternum esse 
alicuius aeterni'; whence it would ap- 
pear that his ms. gave tli<6va. alSiov TWOS 
cit5/ou, which it has been proposed to re- 
store. This however it were rash to do 
against all existing mss. and Proklos. 
The phrase tlnova. didiov might perhaps 
be defended on the same principle as 

I . irpos irirtpov TWV irapa8ti-y|Jid,TWv] 
It may reasonably be asked, how could 
the creator look 117.6$ rd yeyovbs, since at 
that stage there was no 7ryoi'6s to look 
to? Plato's meaning, I take it, is this: 
the yeyovos at which the Artificer would 
look can of course only be the ytyovos 
that he was about to produce. Now if 
he looked at this, instead of fixing his 
eyes upon any eternal type, that would 
mean that he created arbitrarily and at 
random a universe that simply fulfilled 
his fancy at the moment and did not 
express any underlying thought: the 
universe would in fact be a collection of 
incoherent phenomena, a mere plaything 
of the creator. But, says Plato, this 
is not so: material nature is but the 
visible counterpart of a spiritual reality ; 
all things have their meaning. Creation 
is no merely arbitrary exercise of will 

29 c] TIMAIO2. 89 

were impossible to declare him to all men. However we must 
again inquire concerning him, after which of the models did the 
framer of it fashion the universe, after the changeless and abid- 
ing, or after that which has come into being? If now this 
universe is fair and its Artificer good, it is plain that he looked 
to the eternal ; but if nay it may not even be uttered without 
impiety, then it was to that which has come into being. Now 
it is manifest to every one that he looked to the eternal : for the 
universe is fairest of all things that have come to be, and he is 
the most excellent of causes. And having come on this wise 
into being it has been created in the image of that which is 
comprehensible by reason and wisdom and changes never. 
Granting this, it must needs be that this universe is a likeness of 
something. Now it is all-important to make our beginning 
according to nature: and this affirmation must be laid down 
with regard to a likeness and its model, that the words must be 
akin to the subjects of which they are the interpreters : there- 
fore of that which is abiding and sure and discoverable by the 
aid of reason the words too must be abiding and unchanging, 
and so far as it lies in words to be incontrovertible and immova- 
ble, they must in no wise fall short of this ; but those which deal 
with that which is made in the image of the former and which is 
a likeness must be likely and duly corresponding with their 
subject : as being is to becoming, so is truth to belief. If then, 
Sokrates, after so many men have said divers things concerning 

aluviov dKova. in 37 D: but there the ex- does indeed produce a sentence that can 

pression has a pointedness which is lack- be construed ; but it involves larger alte- 

ing here. aiSiov properly means exempt rations of the text, and the position of 

from time, and cannot strictly be applied the word Xtfyous seems extremely unsatis- 

to the phenomenal world, though its factory. I cannot therefore concede his 

duration be everlasting. claim to have restored Plato's words, 

j 3. TOV jiiv oxiv |iov(|iov] Some cor- According to my version of the sentence 

ruption has clearly found its way into elcoi must be supplied with (j.ovt/j.ovs Kal 

this sentence. It seems to me that the oueraTTTwroi/s. 

simplest remedy is to reject olov, which I 17. dcd \6-yov] i.e. they stand in the 

think may have arisen from a duplication same relation to the XOYOJ of the irapd- 

of &roc. By this omission the sentence dtiy/j-a as the elK&v to the TrapdSeiyfjM: as 

becomes perfectly grammatical. Stall- becoming is to being so is probability to 

baum, reading /cai before a0' $<jov, alters truth. We have here precisely the analogy 

oveX^y/cToij, Xcryots, aKtvijToif, to the accu- of Republic 511 E. 
sative, and writes Se for Set. This method 


[29 c 

TTO\\V elTTovrav irepl Oewv ical T^? rov 7rai/ro? yeveaews, 
Bvvarol ytyvoafjieffa Trdvrrj rrdvrw^ avrovs eavrois o/ 
\6yovs Kal dTrTjKpifiwpevowi oTroBovvai, /j,rj 6avp,da-r) 
eav apa fjLTjBevof rjrrov Trape^w/JLeOa et/cora?, dyatrav 
* pevov, <w? o \eyo)v eyca vfieis re ol Kpiral (f>vcriv dv0pa>7rivr)v D 
exoftev, &are trepl rovrwv rov elicora pvOov d7roBe%opevovs 
rovrov fArjBev eri Trepa fyreiv. 

Sn. "Apicrra, co Tifiaie, iravrdiracrL re <y? tce\6Vi<> aT 
TO fjbev ovv Trpooifjiiov Qav^aaia)^ aTreBe^dfjLeQd crov, rov Be Sij vopov 
jo <f)%Tj<> Trepaive. 

VI. TI. Aeyco/jiev 8^ 8t' rjv riva alriav yevea-iv Kal TO rrav 
r68e 6 vvi(rrd<; ^vvecrrrjo'ev. dyados r)v, dyadw Be ovBels irep] E 
ovBevof ov&eTTore eyyiyverai, <j>86vo$' rovrov 8' e/rro? u>v Traira o 
n p,d\i(rra yevea-Qai e/3ov\ri6r} KaoaTr\r}cria eavrut. ravrrjv Brj 
15 7ej/eo-ea>9 Kal Koa-fiov /j,d\iar av ri<? dp%r)v Kvpiwrdr^v Trap* 
dvBpwv <f>povifj,a>v a7ro8e^6/ievo9 opdorara aTroBe^oir' av. /3oi>- 30 A 
yap 6 deos dyaOd p>ev irdvra, <f>\avpov Be firjBsV elvat, 

rts: Oavuforis HSZ. 4 

14 rairrjv 5^: 5^ AHZ. 

omittit A. 3 

H. 9 vcfjiov : \6yov Z. 

:. avrovs taxirois 6)j.oXo^ovp.evo-us] 
The modesty of Timaeus leads him rather 
unduly to depreciate his physical theories: 
it would be hard, I think, to detect any 
inconsistencies in them, though there 
may be points which are not altogether 
a.Trr]Kpipu(n{i>a. But Plato insists with 
much urgent iteration upon the impossi- 
bility of attaining certainty in any account 
of the objects of sense. They have no 
veritable existence, therefore no positive 
truth or secure knowledge concerning 
them is attainable. It is his desire to 
keep this constantly before the reader's 
mind that induces Plato to refer so fre- 
quently to the elicus puffo*. The differ- 
ence between the eiVccis /*00os and 6 Si' 
oKpifieias aXrjOrjs Xo'"yoj is instructively dis- 
played when each is invoked to decide 
the question of the unity of the universe. 
In 31 A the latter authoritatively declares 
the /coV/tos to be one only, and gives the 
metaphysical reason : in 55 D all the 
former ventures to say is TO i**v ovv Sr) 

Trap 1 T)H,W> eva avrov Kara TOV eiKOTa, \6yov 
/J.rjv<jei, aXXos 5 els dXXa irrj 
as erepa 5odcr. 

9. TO |jiv ow irpoo|Aiov] The meta- 
phor is from harp- playing: irpooifjuov is 
the prelude, vd^os the main body of the 
composition: cf. Republic 531 D ^ oik 
t<r/j.ev &Yi irdvra TO.UTO. irpooifita. fffnv aurov 
TOV VQ/J.OV to Sti fia&elv. 

29 D 31 B, c, vi. What then was the 
cause of creation ? The creator was good 
and desired that all things should be so far 
as possible good like himself. So he took 
the world of matter, a chaos of disturb- 
ance and confusion, and brought it to 
order and gave it life and intelligence. 
And the type after which he ordered it 
was the eternal universal animal in the 
world of ideas ; that, even as this compre- 
hends within it all ideal animals, so the 
visible universe should include in it all 
animals that are material. And as the 
ideal animal is of its very essence one and 
alone, so he created not two or many 

30 A] 


the gods and the generation of the universe, we should not prove 
able to render an account everywhere and in all respects con- 
sistent and accurate, let no one be surprised ; but if we can 
produce one as probable as any other, we must be content, 
remembering that I who speak and you my judges are but men : 
so that on these subjects we should be satisfied with the probable 
story and seek nothing further. 

Sokrates. Quite right, Timaeus ; we must accept it exactly 
as you say. Your prelude is exceedingly welcome to us, so 
please proceed with the strain itself. 

VI. Timaeus. Let us declare then for what cause nature 
and this All was framed by him that framed it. He was good, 
and in none that is good can there arise jealousy of aught at 
any time. So being far aloof from this, he desired that all things 
should be as like unto himself as possible. This is that most 
sovereign cause of nature and the universe which we shall most 
surely be right in accepting from men of understanding. For 
God desiring that all things should be good, and that, so far as 

systems of material nature, but one uni- 
verse only-begotten to exist for ever. 

1 2. etyaOis ^ v ] Consistently with all 
his previous teaching Plato here makes 
the airrd aya,6&v the source and cause of 
all existence ; this in the allegory is sym- 
bolized by a benevolent creator bringing 
order out of a preexisting chaos. Of 
course Plato's words are not to be inter- 
preted with a crude literalness. The 
cause of the existence of visible nature is 
the supreme law by virtue of which the 
one absolute intelligence differentiates 
itself into the plurality of material objects : 
that is the reason why the world of matter 
exists at all: then, since intelligence must 
needs work on a fixed plan and with the 
best end in view, the universe thus 
evolved was made as perfect as anything 
material can be. It is necessary to insist 
on this distinction, although, when we 
remember that for Plato existence and 
goodness are one and the same, the dis- 
tinction ultimately vanishes : all things 
exist just so far as they arc good, and no 

more. Thus the conception of the auro 
6.ya6ov as the supreme cause, which is 
affirmed in the Republic but not ex- 
pounded, is here definitely set forth, 
though still invested with the form of a 
vividly poetical allegory. 

13. ov8iroT tyyC-yverai 4>0<$vos] The 
vulgar notion TO Belov <f>9ovepji> was ex- 
tremely distasteful to Plato: cf. Phaedrus 
247 A <j>66vos yap Ufa 0eLov xPu teraTtu. 
So Aristotle metaph. A ii 983 a 2 dXX' ovre 
TO dtiov (f>dovepov frd^xfrcu elvat, oXXck, 
Kal Kara ryv ira.poifJ.iat> iro\\a \f/evdovTai 
dot 5 01. 

15. irap' avSpuv c|>povLfj.a>v] \Vhoare 
the <f>p6vt/j.ot dvSpes? Probably some Py- 
thagoreans. I have not traced the senti- 
ment to any preplatonic thinker ; but it is 
quite consonant with Pythagorean views : 
cf. Stobaeus eel. ii 64 S 
ravrd T<{J HuOayopa' T\O 
[? 6f$]. Stallbaum cites the apophthegm 
attributed by Diogenes Laertius to Thales, 
KtiXXtcrToi' KoV/uos, troirj/Aa ydp 6fov: but 
this does not seem specially apposite. 


[ 3 A 

/card SvvafJ.iv, ovrco B*} irdv ocrov rjv oparov Trapa\a(3(av ov% r)<rv- 
%iav dyov d\\d Kivovpevov TrX^/z/ieXco? Kal draKros, et<? Tagil* avro 
rjyayev e/c TT;<? dragias, ^'y^o'a/iero? etceivo rovrov TravTw; d/jieivov. 
OefJUS Be ovr yv OUT' eart r<p dpia-rw Bpdv d\\o -rr\r)V TO KO\- 
*> XKTTOV \oyia-dfjievos ovv evpi&Kev e/c r<av Kara <f)v<riv oparwv 
ovBev uvorjrov rov vovv e^oi/ro? '6\ov o\ov KO\\IOV ecrecrdai jrore B 
Hpyov, vovv 8" av %pi9 tyv%t)<i dSvvarov Trapayevecrdai TO>. Bid 
&rj TOV \oyi<rfjiov rovBe vovv pev ev ^f^, 'fyvX'nv Be ev <ra>[iaTi 
gvvio-rds TO irdv gwereKTaivero, OTTW? '6 ri /cd\\iaTov e'lij Kara 
10 (f>v<riv api<rTov re epyov aTreipyaafjievos. otrra><? ovv Sr} Kara \6yov 
rev eiKora Bel \eyeiv, rovBe rov Kocrfjiov qjov en^v^ov evvovv re 
rfj d\i)6eia Bid rrjv rov 6eov yevecrOai vrpovoiav. 

Tovrov 6' virdpxpvros av rd rovroi<i efagfjs r^ilv \Kreov, rlvi C 
ru>v %(ac0v avrov els onoicrijra 6 ^vvia~rd^ gwecrrijo'e. rwv 

i. Kara 8xiva|uv] To make the ma- 
terial universe absolutely perfect was im- 
possible, since evil, whatever it may be, 
is more or less inherent in the very nature 
of matter and can never be totally abo- 
lished : cf. Theaetetus 1 76 A d\X' otir' 
caro\{ffOai TO. KO.KO. dvvarov, u Qe65wpe' 
virfvavriov yap TI T$ dyafftf) atl elvai dv&y- 
Ki)' offr' b Oeois aura ISpvyOai, TTJV 8 

0l>TfTT)V QlHTlV Kal TOfSe TOV TOTTOV WepllToXfl 

^{ drdymp- See also Politicus 273 B, c. 
Evil is in fact, just as much as perception 
in space and time, an inevitable accom- 
paniment of the differentiation of abso- 
lute intelligence into the multiplicity of 
finite intelligences. It is much to be 
regretted that Plato has not left us a 
dialogue dealing with the nature of evil 
and the cause of its necessary inherence 
in matter : as it is, we can only conjec- 
ture the line he would have taken. 

irav oaov rjv oparov irapaXa^wv] 
Martin finds in this passage a clear indi- 
cation that chaos actually as a fact existed 
before the ordering of the KM no*. But 
this is due to a misunderstanding of 
Plato's figurative exposition. Proklos 
says with perfect correctness /COT' tiri- 
voidv Ofupfirai irpo rrjs Ko<r/iOTou'oj. The 
statement that the Sytuovpytn found cha- 

otic matter ready to his hand is one 
which TroXi)^x fl T OV vpoffrvxpvro*. 
We learn in 34 c that soul is prior to 
matter, which can only mean that matter 
is evolved out of soul. What Plato ex- 
pressed as a process taking place in time 
must be regarded as a logical conception 
only. When he speaks of matter as cha- 
otic, he does not mean that there was a 
time when matter existed uninformed by 
mind and that afterwards vovs t\6il>v Sie- 
KOffnijffev : he means that matter, as con- 
ceived in itself, is without any formative 
principle of order : it is only when we 
think of it as the outcome of mind that it 
can have any system or meaning. Com- 
pare Appuleius de dogni. Plat. I viii 198 
et hunc quidem mundum nunc sine initio 
esse dicit, alias originem habere natumque 
esse : nullum autem eius exordium atque 
initium esse ideo quod semper fuerit ; 
nativum vero videri, quod ex his rebus 
substantia eius et natura constet, quae 
nascendi sortitae sunt qualitatem. 

ovx rjo-ox^av tryv] The very fact 
that matter is described as in motion, 
though the motion be chaotic, is sufficient 
to prove conclusively that it is a phase of 
since for Plato ifrvx^i is the sole 
Kivrffffus. Kifoi'ififfov ir\?;/n/ueXtDj Kal 




this might be, there should be nought evil, having received all 
that is visible not in a state of rest, but moving without harmony 
or measure, brought it from its disorder into order, thinking that 
this was in all ways better than the other. Now it neither has 
been nor is permitted to the most perfect to do aught but what 
is most fair. Therefore he took thought and perceived that of 
all things which are by nature visible, no work that is without 
reason will ever be fairer than that which has reason, setting 
whole against whole, and that without soul reason cannot dwell 
in anything. Because then he argued thus, in forming the 
universe he created reason in soul and soul in body, that he 
might be the maker of a work that was by nature most fair and 
perfect. In this way then we ought to affirm according to the 
probable account that this universe is a living creature in very 
truth possessing soul and reason by the providence of God. 

Having attained thus far, we must go on to tell what follows : 
after the similitude of what animal its framer fashioned it. To 

drd/crajj describes the condition of matter 
as it would be were it not derived from 
an intelligent apxy- Aristotle refers to 
this passage de caelo III ii 3oo b 17, com- 
paring Plato's chaotic motion to that 
attributed by Demokritos to his atoms. 
And this philosopheme of Demokritos is 
doubtless what Plato had in view : such 
a motion as the former conceives, not 
proceeding from intelligence, could not 
produce a /r6<r/uos. It is impossible that 
Plato could have imagined that this dis- 
orderly motion ever actually existed : 
since all motion is of ^i>x^, an d ^'"X'J 
is intelligent. 

3. ^Y](rd(ivos Kivo TOUTOV iravrws 
aficivov] sc. rdl-tv dramas. Throughout 
this passage Plato is careful to remedy 
the defect he found in Anaxagoras. ' All 
was chaos', said Anaxagoras ; 'then Mind 
came and brought it into order ', ' be- 
cause ', Plato adds, ' Mind thought order 
better than disorder '. Thus the final 
cause is supplied which was wanting in 
the elder philosopher, and we now see 
Mind working tiri 

7. vojv 8' a3 xwpls tjnixtjs] Compare 
Philebns 30 C ffo<(>ia f*.T}v KO! voOs dvtv 
^fX'?* V K &" Tore jfvoiffOrjv. Stallbaum, 
following the misty light of neoplatonic 
inspiration, says of ^t'X 1 ?) ' media est inter 
corpora atque mentem '. But in truth 
vovs is simply the activity of ^KX 1 ? accord- 
ing to her own proper nature : it is soul 
undiluted, as it were; apprehending not 
through any bodily organs, but by the 
exercise of pure thought : it is not some- 
thing distinct from ^xtf, but a particular 
function of ^I'X 1 ?- 

8. 'I'vx'iv 84 v <rwp,aTi] Plato is here 
employing popular language : accurately 
speaking, God constructed body within 
soul, as we see in 36 E. Plutarch quaest. 
platan. IV wrongly infers from this pas- 
sage that, as vovs can only exist in ^^x^i 
so ^vx 1 ? can n ty exist in (rcD/ua. This of 
course is not so : the converse would be 
more correct, that (rw/xa can only exist in 
^i/X 7 }- The phrase vovv tv if/vxH ' s a ' so 
an exoteric expression; for Plato is not 
here concerned to use technical language. 



[30 c 

ovv ev (lepovs eiSei ire^vKorwv firjBevl Kara%i(ao-wpev dre\el yap 
604*09 ovSev nor dv yevoiro /raXoV ov 8' eon TaXXa Voa naff ev 
Kal Kara yevrj popia, rovry irdvrwv oftoiorarov avriv elvai ndu- 
fiev. rd yap 8rj vorjrd %a>a Trdvra eKelvo ev eavrw irepiXafiov 

5 %!,, Kadd-rrep oSe 6 #007109 ^/i9 co*a re aXXa Qpeppara gvve- 
(rrrjKev cpard, ry yap ra,v voovfievaiv ica\\i(nu> Kal /card trdvra D 
TeXep fj,d\i<rra airov o debs o/iotao-at ^ov\tj6el<; %wov ev oparov, 
TrdvQ* oVa avrov Kara <f>v(riv gvyyevrj &Ja eVro? e^ov eavrov, 
%vve<TTr)<re. irorepov ovv opOws eva ovpavov 7rpo<reipijKa/jLev, rj 31 A 

10 7TO\Xoi)<? Kal d-rreipovs \eyeiv ijv opdorepov ; eva, eiirep Kara TO 
Trapabeiy/jia SeSrjjjuovpyrjfjLevos eo-rai. TO ydp irepie-^ov Trdvra, 
07roo-a vorjrd &>a, /J,e0' erepov Sevrepov OVK av TTOT' eirj" 7rd\iv 
yap dv erepov elvai TO Trepl eKeivco Seot a>ov, ov /if/309 av etrrjv 
eKelvto, Kal OVK dv en eKelvouv a\X* eKeivw ra> Trepie^ovn ToS' dv 

15 t^<f>wfJLOt(i}fjLvov \eyoiro opOorepov. 'iva ovv roBe Kara rrjv /JLOVWVIV B 

13 ticetvu: tudvtj) A. 

i. Iv (x^povs ttSti] Stallbaum cites 
Cratylus 394 D tv r^paros tlSet, Phaedo 
91 D Iv op/xovfas ftSet, Republic 389 B ws 
Iv <f>apndKOv etdei, Hippias maior 297 B kv 
rarpiJs TWOS Iteq.. 

i. KaO' fv Kal icard Y^vr^] The neo- 
platonic commentators are at variance 
whether tv or 7^1*1; is to be regarded as 
the more universal expression. I think 
Plato's usage is pretty conclusive in favour 
of taking Iv as the more special, tv will 
thus signify the separate species, such as 
horse or tree ; while yivi], I am disposed 
to think, refers to the four classes men- 
tioned in 40 A, corresponding to the four 
elements to which they severally belong. 
In any case the ai/rd o tffri faov compre- 
hends in it all the scale of inferior ideas 
from the four highest to the lowest species. 

6. TWV voovfuvuv KoXXCorcp] As we 
saw that the material universe is fairer 
than any of its parts, so the universal 
idea is fairer than any of the ideas which 
it comprehends : cf. 39 E Iva r68e ws 6/tot6- 

TdTOr ft Tlf Tf\l(f KO.I VOIJTIf f<fSy. 

8. avrov Kara <f>v<riv |vyycvtj] For 
the construction avrov ^\<yyfvrj compare 
29 B, 77 A, rhilebits 1 1 B. 

IO. tva. t'iirep Kara TO -rrapaSei-yH-ci j 
The objection might occur that every 
other idea, just as much as the ai/ro 
faov, is necessarily one and unique. That 
is true ; but the difference lies in this : 
the abro ffiov is tv as being wav ; there 
cannot be a second oi/ro f<o', else it 
would not contain within it all VOIJTO. fya. 
Therefore while the other particulars may 
be satisfactory fufj-rifj-ara of their ideas, 
although they are many, the bparbs /t6<r- 
/*oj must be one only, else it would not 
copy the VOTJTOS *f6<r/tos in the essential 
attribute of all-comprehensiveness. 

It is noticeable that in this case we have 
an idea with only one particular cor- 
responding. This would have been im- 
possible in the earlier phase of Plato's 
metaphysic. He says in Republic 596 A 
eI5oj yap TTOV Tt fr UKaffrov elu0afj.fv ride- 
aOai vfpl HicaffTa rd iroXXd, ols ravrov 
6vo/j.a lTri<f>tpo/j.(v. But now that the 
ideas are restricted to diroaa <f>vfftt, now 
that they are naturally determined and 
their existence is no longer inferred from 
a group of particulars, there is for Plato 
no reason why a natural genus should not 
exist containing but a single particular. 

3i B] TIMAIO2. 95 

none of these which naturally belong to the class of the partial 
must we deign to liken it : for nothing that is like to the im- 
perfect could ever become fair ; but that of which the other 
animals severally and in their kinds are portions, to this above 
all things we must declare that the universe is most like. For 
that comprehends and contains in itself all ideal animals, even as 
this universe contains us and all other creatures that have been 
formed to be visible. For since God desired to liken it most 
nearly to what is fairest of the objects of reason and in all respects 
perfect, he made it a single visible living being, containing within 
itself all animals that are by nature akin to it. Are we right 
then in affirming the universe to be one, or had it been more true 
to speak of a great and boundless number ? One it must be, if 
it is to be created according to its pattern. For that which 
comprehends all ideal animals that are could never be a second 
in company of another: for there must again exist another 
animal comprehending them, whereof the two would be parts, 
and no longer to them but to that which comprehended them 
should we more truly affirm the universe to have been likened. 
To the end then that in its solitude this universe might be like 

But what is this avro $ov ? Surely 8e e& ovpavos (pavepov. el yap ir\eiovs 

not an essence existing outside the KO<T- ovpavol uairep avQpuiroi, ecrrai etdei ftla 17 

/j.03, else we should have something over irepl ZKCHTTOV dpxtf, 6V ye TroXXat. 

and above the All, and the All would not ei\\' 6W dpiO[j.$ iro\\d, vXrjv Ix"--- S 

be all. It is then (to keep up Plato's -ri rjv elvat OVK extt- v\yv T irpurov. 

metaphor) the idea of the icoa-pos existing tvreXexeia yap. v apa Kal \oyy xal dpid- 

in the mind of the Srj/juovpyos : or, trans- //.< TO irpurov KLVOVV dKivrjrov &i>. Kal TO 

lating poetry into prose, it is the primal Kivot/j.ei>ov apa del Kal <rwex<2s ev povov 

IP which finds its realisation and ultimate eft apa ovpavos jUoVos. 
unity through its manifestation as iroXXd : 12. irdXiv yap av] Compare Republic 

there will be more to say about this on 597 c el dvo /j.6vas Trot^ffeie, ird\n> av /j.ia 

92 C. Proklos has for once expressed the Kara(f>avelri, r,s txeivai av aZ dfi<f>&Tepai rb 

truth with some aptness : TO (itv yap elSos txoiev, Kal etrj dv o &m K\lvi] fKelvrj, 

[irapddeiyfj.a] TJV vorjrws irdv, avros 5^ [6 dXX' oi/x al 5^0. 

drj/j.iovpyos] voepus irav, 6 Si /coV/uos alffd-q- 13. fie'pos] i.e. a subdivision, a lower 

TWS irdv : i.e. the irapdSeiyna is universal generalisation. 

thought regarded as the supreme intelli- 15. Kara rr\v n<Jvxriv] i.e. respect of 

gible, the drjfjuovpyos represents the same its isolation, of being the only one of its 

regarded as the supreme intelligence, kind. This would not have called for 

and the KdVyttos is the same in material explanation, but for Stallbaum's strange 

manifestation. See introduction 38. remark ' mox Kara rijv fjAvuaiv i. q. 

Aristotle deduces the unity of the ov- ftbvov '. 
thus : metaph. A viii 1074" 31 Sri 

[31 B- 

y r$ 7ravre\el &>$>, Bid ravra ovre Bvo otr direipovs 
e-Trol-rjo-ev 6 TTOIWV KOfffiovs, aXX' el? oBe uovoyevrjs ovpavos yeyovwt 

V \ V V 

VII. 2,a)fjiaroeiBe<; Be 8r) Kal oparov dnrbv re Bel TO yevofievov 
5 elvai,' ^copiffdev Be Trvpos ovBev av Trore oparov yevoiro, ovBe 
dirrbv dvev nvos crrepeov, crrepeov Be OVK dvev yrjv odev e'/c 
7ri;po9 Kal yfjt TO TOU Travros dpyofj^evo^ uvi<rrdvai (rcapa o 6eos 
eirolei. Bvo Be ficvo) /caXco? ^vvicrracrOai, rpirov ^&>pt9 ov Bvvarov 
Beo-fiov yap ev /Mecrw Bel rivd d/j,<f)olv ^vvaycoyov yiyvecrdai' Beer- G 
10 fjioov Be KaX\.icrro<$ 09 dv avrbv re Kal rd j;vvBov/j,eva o ri fj,d- 
\icrra ev Trotfj. rovro Be 7re(f>VKv dva\oyia /caXXtcrra aTTOTeXetv 
OTrorav yap dpiOpdov rpiwv eire oyKwv eire Bvvdpewv (avrivwvovv 
rf TO fjie<rov, o ri trep TO Trpourov Trpo? avro, rovro avro 777)09 TO 32 A 
ecr^arov, Kal 7rd\iv avdis, o ri TO e<r%arov 777)09 TO ueo-ov, TO ue<rov 
15 777)09 TO irpwrov, rore TO fjiecrov pev irpwrov Kal ea-^arov yiyvopevov, 
TO S' ecr^arov Kal TO Trpwrov av [j,eo-a dutyorepa, TrdvO* ouTt9 e 
rd avrd elvai ^v/jL^jjcrerai, rd avrd Be yevofieva aXX7;Xot9 ev 
10 re omittunt SZ. 14 rovro ante alterum rb ntvov habent SZ. 

OT Bvo oiV airctpovs] This is harmony. And of these substances God 

directed against the theory of Demo- 
Is ritos, that there were an infinite number 
of KbfffjLOi: a theory which is of course 
a perfectly just inference from Demo- 
kritean principles. 

i. tts 6'Sc |iovo-ycvi]s ovpavos] Com- 
pare 92 C els ovpavos 8Se fj.ovoytvrj^ d>v. 
The words that follow must be under- 
stood as an affirmation of the everlasting 
continuance of the K60>ios, and -yeyovws, 
as I have already done my best to show, 
does not imply its beginning in time. 

31 B 34 A, c. vii. Now the world 
must be visible and tangible, therefore 
God constructed it of fire and earth. 
But two things cannot be harmoniously 
blended without a third as a mean : there- 
fore he set proportionals between them. 
Between plane surfaces one proportional 
suffices; but seeing that the bodies of 
fire and earth are solid, two proportionals 
were required. Therefore he created air 
and water, in such wise that as fire is to 
air, so is air to water, and so is water 
to earth : thus the four became one 

used the whole in constructing the uni- 
verse, so that nothing was left outside it 
which might be a source of danger to 
it. And he gave it a spherical form, be- 
cause that shape comprehends within it 
all other shapes whatsoever : and he gave 
it the motion therewith conformable, 
namely rotation on its own axis. And 
he bestowed on it neither eyes nor ears 
nor hands nor feet nor any organs of 
respiration or nutrition; for as nothing 
existed outside it, nor had it requirement 
of aught, it was sufficient to itself and 
needed none of these things. 

4. oparov airr6v TC] Visibility and 
tangibility are the two most conspicuous 
characteristics of matter: therefore the 
fundamental constituents of the universe 
are fire and earth. This agrees with the 
view of Parmenides : cf. Aristotle physica 
I v i88 a 20 Kal -yAp> iS 
\jsvxpbv apxas jrotet, ravra 

vvp Kal yrjv: and Parmenides 112 foil. 
(Karsten) : see too Aristotle tfe gen. el 
corr. II ix 336* 3. The four elements 

32 A] TIMAIOS. 97 

the all-perfect animal, the maker made neither two universes nor 
an infinite number ; but as it has come into being, this universe 
one and only-begotten, so it is and shall be for ever. 

VII. Now that which came into being must be material and 
such as can be seen and touched. Apart from fire nothing 
could ever become visible, nor without something solid could it 
be tangible, and solid cannot exist without earth : therefore did 
God when he set about to frame the body of the universe form 
it of fire and of earth. But it is not possible for two things 
to be fairly united without a third; for they need a bond between 
them which shall join them both. The best of bonds is that 
which makes itself and those which it binds as complete a unity 
as possible ; and the nature of proportion is to accomplish this 
most perfectly. For when of any three numbers, whether ex- 
pressing three or two dimensions, one is a mean term, so that as 
the first is to the middle, so is the middle to the last ; and con- 
versely as the last is to the middle, so is the middle to the first ; then 
since the middle becomes first and last, and the last and the first 
both become middle, of necessity all will come to be the same, and 
being the same with one another all will be a unity. Now if the 

of Empedokles likewise reduced them- a square root; cf. Theaetetus 148 A; and 
selves to two : cf. Aristotle metaph. A iv here stands for a number composed of 
985" 33 i> A"?" XP^ 7 "^ 7 e r^TTapcriv, d\\' two factors and representing two dimen- 
ws Svfflv oSffi. (j,6vois, irvpl / Ko.6' cn/rd, sions. This interpretation of the terms 
TO?J 5' airiKeifjitvois us /JLIQ (fttivet, yfj re Kal seems to me the only one at all apposite 
dtpi Kal SSart: and de gen. et corr. II iii to the present passage. Another expla- 
33O b 20. His division however does not nation is that they represent the dis- 
agree with that of Plato, who classes fire tinction made by Aristotle in Categories 
air and water as forms of the same base, i vi 4 b 20 between continuous and dis- 
and places earth alone by itself. Crete number ; the former being a geo- 

8. 8vo 84 |i6vci>] Two things alone metrical figure, the latter a number in the 

cannot be formed into a perfect harmony strict sense. But as our present passage 

because they cannot constitute an dva\o7/a. is not concerned with pure numbers at 

12. tl'rt o'-yKwv Art Swoficwv] 'whe- all, this does not seem to the purpose, 
ther cubic or square.' The Greek mathe- 13. '6 ri irep TO irpwrov irp&s avr6] e.g. 

matician in the time of Plato looked the continuous proportion 4 : 6 :: 6 : 9 

upon number from a geometrical stand- may either be reversed so that fffxarov 

point, as the expression of geometrical becomes irp&rov, 9 : 6 :: 6 : 4: or alter- 

figures. 6yicos is a solid body, here a nated so that the pfoov becomes ?<rxaroy 

number representing a solid body, i.e. and irp&Tov, as 6 : 9 :: 4 : 6, or 6 : 4 ::g '. 6. 

composed of three factors, so as to repre- Thus, says Plato, the ava\oyta forms a 

sent three dimensions. &W/u$ is the coherent whole, in which the members 

technical term for a square, or sometimes may freely interchange their positions. 

P. T. 7 

9 8 


[ 3 2 A 

rrdvra H<rrai. el ^v ovv eVtVeSoi/ fiev, f3d0o<; Se firfSev 
IfSet yiyvea-dat TO rov rravrbs <rfia, /ua /j^o-orr)? av 
rd re /i0' eavrrjs ^vvSeiv Kal eavrrjv vvv Se arepeoeiSrj yap 
avrov 7rpo<rfjKev elvai, rd Be crrepea fiia /JLCV ovSeTrore, Svo Be del 

5 fjuea-oryres %vv op par rover iv OVTW Sr) Trvpos re Kal 7779 vSap depa 
re o #eo9 eV fiea-y 6ei<$, /cat 717)09 a\\rj\a icaff* ocrov rjv Svvarov 
ova rov avrov \6yov aTrepyaa-d/Mevos, '6 ri irep Trvp 7rpo9 depa, 
rovro depa Trpo? v&cop, teal '6 ri drjp 77/009 vScop, vSwp 77/009 yfjv^ 
%vvSr)<T Kal ^vvear^craro ovpavov oparov Kal nrrrov. Kal Sid 

to ravra UK re $r) rovrcov roiovrcov Kal rov dpiOfiov rerrdpcov TO 
rov KOGfAov ff&fia eyevvrjOt) Si dva\oyia<; ofj,o\oyrjarav, <f>i\iav re 
eo"%ev K rovrwv, &<rr els ravrov avrw vve\0ov aXvrov viro rov 

3 ffrepeoeiSrj : ffrepoeiSrj (sic) A. 8 roOro ante i5wp dedit S. 

10 ro&rwv rotofrruv: rofrruv [/cai] TOIO&TUV H. 12 ^vvf\06v: !-we\8fii> A. 

i. |xCa |A<r6TT]s av |ijpKi] Plato lays 
down the law that between two plane 
numbers one rational and integral mean 
can be obtained, while between solid 
numbers two are required. But here 
we are met by a difficulty. For there 
are certain solid numbers between which 
one mean can be found; and this cer- 
tainly was not unknown to Plato, who 
was one of the first mathematicians of 
his day. For instance, between 8 (i 3 ) 
and 512 (8 3 ) we have the proportion 
8 : 64 :: 64 : 512. A second point, re- 
garded by both Bockh and Martin as 
a difficulty, is really no difficulty at all, 
viz. the fact that there are plane numbers 
between which two means can be found, 
e.g. between 4 (2 2 ) and 256 (i6 2 ) we have 
4 : 16 :: 64 : 256. This is immaterial; 
for Plato does not say that two means 
can never be found between two planes, 
but merely that one is sufficient. The 
other point however does require eluci- 
dation. Bockh, who has written two 
able essays on the subject, offers the 
following explanation : ' Philosophus nos- 
ter non universe planorum et solidorum 
magnitudinem spectavit, sed solum earn 
comparabilium figurarum rationem, quae 
fit, ubi alterum alteri inscribas, ut supra 
fecimus, et ibi notatas lineas exares: 

idque etiam quadratis et cubis accom- 
modari potest.' This he supports by a 
geometrical demonstration. Martin's ex- 
planation however (with some modifi- 
cations), despite Bockh's criticism of it, 
appears to me simpler and better. He 
points out that Plato's statement is true, 
if we suppose him to be using the words 
tiriiredov and orepeoV in their strictest 
sense, so that a plane number consists 
of two factors only, and the solid only 
of three; all the factors being primes. 
Now it is a priori in the highest degree 
probable that Plato is using these terms 
in their strictest possible sense. Martin 
is not indeed correct in saying that be- 
tween two such strictly plane numbers 
two means can never be intercalated : 
for, given that a, b, c are prime numbers, 
we may have this proportion: ab : ac :: 
be : c 2 , where ac, be are integral. But 
this, as we have seen, is of no import- 
ance, since Plato does not deny the possi- 
bility of such a series, and since his ex- 
tremes must be squares. On the other 
hand, provided that both the extremes are 
squares, we can always interpose a single 
mean between them, e.g. a 2 : ab :: ab : &. 
Again between solids formed of prime num- 
bers we can never (with one exception) 
find one rational mean : for if a 3 : x :: x : b* 




body of the universe were to have been made a plane surface 
having no thickness, one mean would have sufficed to unify itself 
and the extremes ; but now since it behoved it to be solid, 
and since solids can never be united by one mean, but require two 
God accordingly set air and water betwixt fire and earth, and 
making them as far as possible exactly proportional, so that fire 
is to air as air to water, and as air is to water water is to earth, 
thus he compacted and constructed a universe visible and tangible. 
For these reasons and out of elements of this kind, four in 
number, the body of the universe was created, being brought 
into concord through proportion ; and from these it derived 
friendship, so that coming to unity with itself it became in- 
dissoluble by any force save the will of him who joined it. 

then x = ab\> 'ab ; and similarly if the ex- 
tremes are of the form cPb or abc. The 
exception is the case a?b : abc :: abc : be 2 . 
We can however obtain two rational and 
integral means, whether the extremes 
be cubes or compounded of unequal 
factors. Howbeit for Plato's purpose 
the extremes must be cubes, since a con- 
tinuous proportion is required correspond- 
ing to fire : air :: air : water :: water : 
earth. This we represent by a 3 : a*b :: 
a*b : alP : : ab 2 : b 3 . The necessity of this 
proviso Martin has overlooked. Thus the 
exceptional case of a single mean is 
excluded. This limitation of the ex- 
tremes to actual cubes is urged by Bb'ckh 
as an objection to Martin's theory: but 
surely the cube would naturally commend 
itself to Plato's love of symmetry in 
representing his extremes, more especially 
as his plane extremes are necessarily 
squares. It is clear to my mind that, in 
formulating his law, Plato had in view 
two squares and two cubes as extremes : 
in the first case it is obviously possible 
to extract the square root of their pro- 
duct and so obtain a single mean ; in 
the second it is as obviously impossible. 
Bockh's defence of his own explana- 
tion is to be found in vol. in of the 
Kleine Schriften pp. 253 265. The 
Neoplatonists attempted to extend this 

proportion to the physical qualities which 
they assigned to the four elements in 
groups of three; but as these belong to 
them in various degrees, the analogy will 
not hold : e.g. mobility is shared by fire 
air and water, but not to the same extent 
in each ; and similarly with the rest. 
As to Stallbaum's attempt at explanation 
I can only echo the comment of Martin : 
'je ne sais vraiment comment M. Stall- 
baum a pu se faire illusion au point 
de s'imaginer qu'il se comprenait lui- 
meme '. 

9. 8ld TdVTd ?K T Si) TOVTCOV] ' On 

this principle and out of these materials': 
signifies the dvaXoyla, Totirwv the 
Plato is accounting for the 
fact that the so-called elements are four 
in number by representing this as the 
expression of a mathematical law; and 
thus he shows how number acts as a 
formative principle in nature. In tf>i\la.v 
we have an obvious allusion to Empe- 
dokles. It is noteworthy that as Plato's 
application of number in his cosmogony 
is incomparably more intelligent than that 
of the Pythagoreans, so too he excels 
Empedokles in this matter of <f>i\ia : he is 
not content with the vague assertion that 
<t>i\ia keeps the universe together; he 
must show how <f>t\la comes about. 


ioo ITAATHNOS [32 c 

a\\ov 7r\rjv VTTO rov ^vvB^<ravro<f yeveo~0ai. roSv Be Brj rerrdpwv 
%v o\ov etcaa-rov ei\r)<J>ev rj rov KOO-JJLOV %vo-racris. CK jap rrvpos 
vBaros re teal depof Kal 777? ^vvea-rrjcrev avrov o ^vvio-ra<f, 
ovBev ovBevos ovBe Bvvaftiv e^coOev vTroXnrwv, rdBe Biavotj- 
5 9ei<f, rrpwrov pev 'iva o\ov o ri jj,d\icrra a>ov re\eov K re\ea)v D 

T&V fJAptoV i1), 7T/30? B TOVTOIS V, O.TC OV% V7TO\.\etfJ,fjLeV(i)V % 33 A 

<&v a\\o TOIOVTOV yevoir' av, en, 8e 'iva dyijpwv /cal avo<rov rj, 
KdTavowv, &5? %v<rTa,T(a <rd>fjuiTi deppd /cat "^rv^pd /cal TrdvO* ocra 
8vvdfJ,ei<; tV^ipa9 e^et TrepiKrrd/Aeva egwOev Kal Trpovrrl'TrTovra 
10 dtcaipcos. \vet Kal voa-ovs yrjpds re ttrdyovra fyOlvew Troiei. Bid 
&r) rr)v alriav Kal rov \o^ta'p,ov ro^Se ev '6\ov o\Q)v e arcavrwv 
re\eov Kal dyrjpwv Kal dvotrov avrov ereKTijvaro. <T%fjfj,a Be B 
avrat TO rrpkrrov Kal TO ^vyyeves. ru> Be rd rcdvr ev 
o3a irepte^eiv fJ,eK\ovri &> rcpkirov av eir) o~^^/za TO 
I5 7repiei,\r}(po<; ev avra> irdvra oTro&a <r\rjp,ara' Bio Kal <r(f>aipoeiBe<;, 
CK fievov Trdvrr] TT^O? Ta? TeXevTa? laov aTre^ov, KVK\OTepe<t avro 
eropveixraro, Trdvrwv re\ewrarov ofioiorarov re avro eavrw o"xrj- 
fj,drcov, vo/j,icra<i /jivpia) Ka\\iov opoiov dvopolov. \elov Se Brj 
Ki>K\a) rcav e^a>0ev avro dTrtjKpiftovro Tro\\wv %dpiv. op^p.drwv 
10 re <ydp e-rreBeiro ovBev, oparov yap ovBev vire\eLrrero e^caffev ovS" C 
, ovBe ydp aKovarov rrvev^id re OVK r/v 7repteo"To? Beoftevov 
ovS' av nvo<; eVtSee? r/v opydvov <r%eiv, a5 rijv fiev et? 
eavro rpo<f>rjv Begoiro, rrjv Be rrporepov e^ucftaa'fievrjv drrorre^^oi ^f 
ira\iv. dirrjei re yap ovSev ovBe Trpovrjeiv avrw rroQkv ovBe yap 

8 l-v<rrmr($ ed/Mri dedi cum H e W. Wagneri coniectura. %wiffT&.s T fftbftari, A. 
SZ. 10 fnreXelirero : VTr^Xenrro A. 

4. ov8i 8uvajj.iv] dfoafjiiv is not to be Attic. The mss. for the most part have 
understood as 'potentiality', but as wioras or ZVVUTT&V T$ ffufiari. ^uo-TaVy 
' power ' or 'faculty'. <rcfyiaTi is supported by Cicero's rendering 

5. T&COV] 'complete' and so per- ' coagmentatio corporis '. 

feet: cf. Aristotle metaph. A xvi 102 i b 9. irepirra|Ava I w 6tv Kal irpo<nrir- 

12 rAetov X^yercu fv (M& ov py fcrnv (w rovra] Compare the statement in 81 D 

rt Xa/Seu' nydt iv (d>piov : and from this as to the cause of disease and decay. 

sense Aristotle derives all the other n. 8v 8Xov] It is needless either with 

meanings of this word. Stallbaum to read ft/a or to change airrbv 

8. ws wrra.T<p o-u^ari] I have into avrb : the meaning is ' he made it 

adopted the correction of W. Wagner. (the *c60>tos) one single whole '. 

The reading of Stallbaum and the Zurich 14. TO irtpuiXr]<(>os ^v OVTW] The 

edition i vviarq. rA ffwfMra has poor ms. sphere is said to contain within it all 

authority and is weak in sense ; moreover other shapes, because of all figures 

the form {wt<rr is extremely doubtful having an equal periphery it is the great- 

33 c] TIMAIOS. 101 

Now the making of the universe took up the whole bulk of 
each of these four elements. Of all fire and all water and air 
and earth its framer fashioned it, leaving over no part nor power 
without. Therein he had this intent : first that it might be 
a creature perfect to the utmost with all its parts perfect; next 
that it might be one, seeing that nothing was left over whereof 
another should be formed ; furthermore that it might be free 
from age and sickness ; for he reflected that when hot things 
and cold and all such as have strong powers gather round a 
composite body from without and fall unseasonably upon it, 
they undermine it, and bringing upon it sickness and age cause 
its decay. For such motives and reasons he fashioned it as one 
whole, with each of its parts whole in itself, so as to be perfect 
and free from age and sickness. And he assigned to it its 
proper and natural shape. To that which is to comprehend all 
animals in itself that shape seems proper which comprehends in 
itself all shapes that are. Wherefore he turned it of a rounded 
and spherical shape, having its bounding surface in all points at 
an equal distance from the centre : this being the most perfect 
and regular shape ; for he thought that a regular shape was 
infinitely fairer than an irregular. And all round about he 
finished off the outer surface perfectly smooth, for many 
reasons. It needed not eyes, for naught visible was left 
outside; nor hearing, for there was nothing to hear; and there 
was no surrounding air which made breathing needful. Nor 
must it have any organ whereby it should receive into itself its 
sustenance, and again reject that which was already digested ; 
for nothing went forth of it nor entered in from anywhere ; for 

est: all others can be inscribed within it. Aristotle physica IV vi 2i3 b 22 elvat 5' 

18. Xciov 84 8ij] This might be sup- ?<pa<rav ical ol Hv0ay6peioi Kevbv, Kal tirftff- 

posed to be involved in what has been thai a&rb r<p ovpavf K rov airtlpov 

said : but Plato is insisting that not only Tn>evfj.aros ws avairvtovri Kal rb Kfvbv, $ 

is the general shape of the K&ff(i.os spheri- dioplfei rdy 0&reis, us 6vros TOV Ktvov 

cal, but that it is a sphere without any x^P 1 ^^ " T "^ s v ty e w Ka * T W Siopt- 

appendages. aew Kal TOUT' elvai irpwrov tv rots dpi&- 

ii. irvevfJ-a TC ovtc r\v irepitoros] This fwlr rb yap nevbv diopifeiv rty (ftvcnv 

is directed against a Pythagorean fancy, avr&v: and physica III iv 2O3 a 6 ol ph 

that outside the universe there existed TlvOayApfiot tv rots euV0ip"oTj [sc. nOtcun 

xevbv, or aireipov Trvtvfj.a, which passed rb aireipov]' ov yap xupiffrbv TTOIOVCTI. rbv 

into the cavities in the universe, as dpiff^v Kal etvai rb tl-u rov ovpavov 

though the latter were respiring it: cf. airtipov. See too Stobaeus eel. \ 382. 



[33 c 

rjv avro yap eavry rpo<j>rjv rr)v eavrov (f>6icriv Trape^ov KOI 
Trdvra ev eavr<p ical v<p J eavrov iracryov teal Bpwv etc re^vt)^ D 
yeyovev rjyrjcraro yap avro 6 %vv0els avrap/ces ov afiewov ea-ecrdai 
fid\\ov 77 TrpoaBees d\\wv. %ip(5v Be, al? ovre \af3elv ovre av 
5 rivd dfAVvao-Qai %p^La rt<; rjv, ftdrrfv OVK wero Beiv avrw Trpoo-d- 
,^ ovBe TroBwv ovBe 0X09 rr;? Trepl rr)v j3d(riv VTrypefflas. 

yap aTreveifiev avrw rrjv rov o-w/taro? oltceiav, roav cirrd 34 A 
rrjv Trepl vovv Kal (ppovijcnv fiaXtara ovcrav Bio Srj /card ravra 
ev ra> avrw ical ev eavrw Treptayaywv avro eVot^o-e KVK\W KL- 
10 velcrOai crrpetyo/jLevov, ra<? Be e avratra? Kivrjcreis d^>el\e Kal 
d7r\av<> aTreipydcraro efceivcov eVl Be rrjv TrepioBov ravrr)v arf 
ovBev TroBoov Beov d<rKe\e$ ical ajrovv avro eyevwrjcrev. 

VIII. O^TO? Brj 7ra9 6Wo? act \oyio-fios 8eov Trepl rov Trore 

T^V (O.VTOV 4>0L(riv irapl- 
\ov] By this striking phrase Plato means 
that the nutrition of one thing is effected 
by the decomposition of another : all the 
elements of which the universe is composed 
feed upon each other and are fed upon in 
turn. The idea is still more boldly ex- 
pressed by Herakleitos fr. 25 (Bywater) 
fj; TrOp rt>v yjjs Kal ayp tfj r6v 
irvpbs, vSup fj; TOV d^pos, 
yrj TOV vdaros. 

4. xcipwv 8^] There is an anaco- 
luthon : the genitive is written as though 
Xpda- fy belonged to the main clause. 

7. ri\v rov o-tojiaros olKcCav] Plato 
does not of course mean that the motion 
belongs to the body in the sense of being 
its own attribute, because all motion is 
of soul ; but simply that the most perfect 
motion suits the most perfect form. For 
TUV tiTTa. see 43 B : the seven are up and 
down, forwards and backwards, to right 
and to left, and finally rotation upon an 

8. TT\V irtpl vovv Kal <j>prfvTj<ri,v] Com- 
pare Laws 898 A TO Kara roOra Sijirof *cal 
w<rai/ru>s Kal tv T< avr(f Kal irepl TO, avTa 
Kal irpos ra aura Kal KaO^ ?va X6 < yo>' *coi 
Tii^iv fjiav au<pu Kive1ff6ai X^yoKrej vovv 
i~fy> Tf tv fvl (ppofj.^vijv Klvrjfftv, ff<paipas 
ei/Topvov dirtiKaff/j^va <j>opals, OVK &v iroTf 

<pav\oi dy/uovpyol 
elKovuv. Aristotle states his objections 
(which are not very cogent) to the com- 
parison in de anima I iii 15. 

9. KVK\O> Ktvdo-0cu <rrp<t>6|ivov] If 
we compare the account given in the 
Timaeus concerning the motion of the 
Ko<r/j,os with that in the myth of the Poli- 
ticus, we shall observe a peculiar and very 
significant discrepancy. In a passage of 
the latter dialogue, 269 A foil., we are told 
that for a fixed period God turns the uni- 
verse in a given direction, making it re- 
volve upon its axis; at the end of this 
period he lets go of it and suffers it to 
rotate by itself for a like period in a re- 
verse direction : its motion being the 
recoil from that which had been imparted 
by God. And this alternation recurs ad 
infinitum. Now the reason for this 
singular arrangement is thus stated by 
Plato : TO AfttTa Tavra KOI uxravTws 
del Kal Tavrov etvai Tots irdvTwv 

TT)S Taews. 6V 5 ovpavov /cat KOG/AOV ^TTW- 
vo/j.a.KOfj.ev, iro\\<2v fj.ev Kal fiaKapiuv trapa 
TOV yevv-fjffavTOS fiTfi\r]<pev, drcip otv di) 
KfKOLvuvijKf KOL (Tti/taTos. For this cause 
it was impossible to give it the same mo- 
tion unchanged for ever; so God devised 
this ava.KVK\i)o~LS as the slightest irapdX- 

34 A] 



there was nothing. For by design was it created to supply its 
own sustenance by its own wasting, and to have all its action 
and passion in itself and by itself : for its framer deemed that 
were it self-sufficing it would be far better than if it required 
aught else. And hands, wherewith it had no need to grasp 
aught nor to defend itself against another, he thought not fit idly 
to bestow upon it, nor yet feet, nor in a word anything to serve 
as the means of movement. For he assigned it that motion 
which was proper to its bodily form, of all the seven that which 
most belongs to reason and intelligence. Wherefore turning it 
about uniformly in the same spot on its own axis, he made it to 
revolve round and round ; but all the six motions he took away 
from it and left it without part in their wanderings. And since 
for this revolution there was no need of feet he made it without 
legs and without feet. 

VIII. So the universal design of the ever-living God, that 

Xois from a perpetually constant motion. 
But in the Timaeus the movement of the 
universe is changeless and everlastingly in 
the same direction . Now the interpreta- 
tion of this difference is in my judgment 
indubitably this. The passage in the 
Politicus belongs to a different class of 
myth to the allegory of the Timaeus. 
Plato is not there expounding his meta- 
physical theories under a similitude ; he 
is telling a tale with a moral to it. There- 
fore it suited his convenience to adopt 
the popular distinction between spirit 
and matter; and since the /co<7yu.oj was 
material, he was forced to deny it the 
motion peculiar to TO Qeiorarov. In the 
Timaeus, on the contrary, when the entire 
universe is the self-evolution of vovs, the 
distinction between spirit and matter is 
finally eliminated; and there is now no 
reason for refusing, or rather there is a 
necessity for assigning to the KOOT/OJ the 
unchanging motion of the Same. I do 
not mean to imply that Plato's view on 
this subject was different when he wrote 
the Politicus ; merely that the circum- 
stances and object of his writing were 

34 A 36 D, c. viii. So God made the 
universe a sphere, even and smooth and 
perfect, quickened through and through 
with soul, alone and sufficient to itself. 
But he made not soul later than body, 
as we idly speak of it: but rather, as 
soul was to be mistress and queen over 
body, he framed her first, of three ele- 
ments blended, of Same and of Other 
and of Essence. And when the blending 
was finished, he ordered and apportioned 
her according to the intervals of a musical 
scale, so that the harmony thereof per- 
vaded all her substance. And then he 
divided the whole soul into two portions, 
which he formed into two intersecting 
circles; and he called them the circle 
of the Same and the circle of the Other : 
and he gave the circle of the Same 
dominion over the circle of the Other. 
And the outer circle, which is of the 
Same, he left undivided, but the circle 
of the Other he cleft into seven circles, 
four one way revolving and three the 
other; and their distances one from an- 
other were ordained according to the 
proportion of the seven harmonic num- 
bers of the soul. 



[34 B- 

eo~6fjivov 0eov \oyio-0els \elov Kal 6fJM\ov Travraxfj re eK fjbecrov B 
i<rov Kal 'o\ov Kal reXeov eK re\ewv (rw^drwv a-w^a eTroti/cre' 
^fv^r}v Be et<? TO pAa-ov avrov 6els Bid Tfavros re ereive Kal eri 
e^o)0ev TO o~e3//,a avrfj TrepieKaXv^re ravrr), Kal KVK\U> Br) KVK\OV 

5 <rrpe<f)6fjLvov ovpavov eva fiovov eprjfjiov Karecrrrja-e, Bi aperrjv Be 
avrov avrq> Bvvdfjievov ^vyyiyve(T0at, Kal ovBevos erepov 7rpoo~Beo- 
iievov, yvu>pifjiov Be Kal <f>i\ov iKavws avrov avra>. Bia rcavra 
Br) ravra evBaipova Oeov avrov eyevvr]aaro. 

Trjv Be Br) ilrvYrjv ou^ GJ? vvv varepav em^eipovp,ev \eyeiv, 

10 ovro)<f efjt,r)^avi]o-aro Kal 6 0eo<; vewrepav ov yap dv dp^ea-dai c 
irpecrfivrepov vrrb vecorepov gvvepgas elatrev d\\d TTW? ^/iet? 
TroXi) fj,ere^ovre<f rov Trpoo-rv^ovro^ re Kal eiKr) ravrr) irrj /cat 
v' 6 Be Kal yeveo~ei Kal apery rrporepav Kal Trpecr/Svrepav 

Kal dp^ovcrav dp^ofjuevov ^vvecrrrj- 

15 <raro eK roovBe re Kal roiwBe rporrw. rr)^ d/JLepicrrov Kal del 35 A 

2 Kal ante IK habet A. 

the Epicureans later held corpus quod 
vas quasi constitit eius, Lucr. in 440 
rather she comprehends it. The same 
figure recurs 36 E. Aristotle's criticism 
in metaph. A vi 107 i b 37 is based on a 
confusion between /caret -xpovov and /car' 

9. ov\ us vvv vcrr^pav] This passage 
ought surely to be warning enough to 
those who will not allow Plato the ordi- 
nary licence of a story-teller. A similar 
rectification of an inexact statement is to 
be found at 54 B. 

12. TOV irpO<TTV)(6vTOS T Ktti lKT) | 

Cf. Philebus 28 D T-QV TOV 6.\6yov Kal 
eltcfj 8vva/j.iv. Stallbaum has the follow- 
ing curious remark : ' egregie convenit 
cum iis quae Legum libro x. 904 A dis- 
putantur, ubi animam indelebilem qui- 
dem esse docetur, nee vero aeternam'. 
This were ' inconstantia Platonis' with a 
vengeance: fortunately nothing of the 
kind is taught in the passage cited. The 
words are>\fOpov 8 ov yevoftevov [TO 
yevo/j-tvov Herm.] a\\' OVK aluviov, w<r- 
trep ol /card VOU.QV 6vTes 6eol. Plato here 
plainly denies eternity, not to soul, but 
to the ^(TTaertj of soul and body, which 

it was a complete whole constructed out 
of the whole quantity that existed of its 
constituent elements, as stated in 32 c. 

3- 'I' V X 1 '\ V 84 ls TO [ie'crov| Soul 
being unextended, this is of course meta- 
phorical, signifying that every part of 
the material universe from centre to cir- 
cumference is informed and instinct with 
soul. In the words that follow, tfaBev 
TO ffu/M OMT-Q irtpitKaXvi^f TafrrT), Stall- 
baum (who seems throughout to regard 
Plato as incapable of originating any 
idea for himself) will have it that he 
is following Philolaos. Now the Py- 
thagorean irvevfj-a airetpov, the existence 
of which is peremptorily denied by Plato 
in 33 C, has not a trace of community 
with the Platonic world-soul: nor is 
there any reasonable evidence that Philo- 
laos or any other Pythagorean conceived 
such a soul. Plato seems by this phrase 
simply to assert the absolute domination 
of soul over body. The old physicists 
regarded soul or life as a function of 
material things, but for Plato matter is 
but an accident of soul : neither will he 
allow that soul is contained in body, as 

35 A] 



he planned for the God that was some time to be, made its 
surface smooth and even, everywhere equally distant from the 
centre, a body whole and perfect out of perfect bodies. And 
God set soul in the midst thereof and spread her through all its 
body and even wrapped the body about with her from without, 
and he made it a sphere in a circle revolving, a universe one and 
alone ; but for its excellence it was able to be company to itself 
and needed no other, being sufficient for itself as acquaintance 
and friend. For all these things then he created it a happy god. 
But the soul was not made by God younger than the body, 
even as she comes later in this account we are essaying to give ; 
for he would not when he had joined them together have suffered 
the elder to be governed by the younger : but we are far too 
prone to a casual and random habit of mind which shows itself 
in our speech. God made soul in birth and in excellence 
earlier and elder than body, to be its mistress and governor ; and 
he framed her out of the following elements and in the following 

is avuXeffpos, since such a mode of exist- 
ence must subsist perpetually, but not 
aluvios, since it belongs to yeveins. 

13. ycv&rci Ka ^ < *P T Ti Tpor^pav] The 
statement that soul is prior to matter in 
order of generation can mean nothing 
else but that matter is evolved out of 
soul: for had matter an independent 
apxv, it would not be vvrepov yeveaei. 
Again the priority is logical not temporal. 

15. ^K Twv8] Aristotle de anima I 
ii 4O4 b 16 says TOV afiTov dt Tpoirov Kal 
nXdraw v rip Ti/ua/y TTJV faxty K rdiv 
ffToixelwv Troter ywufficeffdai yap rip 6p.olif 
TO &JJ.QIOV, Kal Ta IT pay para tic ruv apxvv 
elvcu. This statement is in more than 
one respect gravely misleading. First, 
although it is impossible to suppose that 
Aristotle really meant to classify Plato's 
ffToixefa along with the material <TTotx e * a 
of Empedokles and the rest, yet, after 
stating the theories of the materialists, 
to proceed TOV avrov St Tpoirov Kal IlXd- 
TUV is, to say the least, a singularly in- 
felicitous mode of exposition. Next, 
while it is true that in Plato's scheme 
like is known by like, yet that is not the 

fundamental principle. The antithesis 
Same and Other, One and Many, is the 
very basis of his whole metaphysic, and 
must inevitably be the basis of his psy- 
chogony. yivu><rK(ff8at T$ opoly TO op.oi.ov 
is consequent, not antecedent. 

TTJS dp.epo-rov] First a word con- 
cerning the Greek. The genitives TTJS 
d/j.epiffTov.../j.eptffTTJs might well enough 
be taken with Proklos as dependent on 
ev jj.e<rij). I think however they are rather 
to be considered as in a somewhat loose 
anticipative apposition to el- dfj.<j>oiv, with 
which words the construction first be- 
comes determinate. Stallbaum is cer- 
tainly wrong in connecting them with 
elSos. Presently the words o.Z irepl after 
TTJS re ravrov <f>vaeus are unquestionably 
spurious repeated no doubt from TT;S oC 
n-f pi TCL ffufj-ara. In the phrase del KO.TO. 
ravra exotiffrjs oixrlas Dr Jackson has 
with some probability suggested that 
for oixrlas we should read <f>ti<rew. there 
is certainly an awkwardness in this use 
of ovalas, when we have the word directly 
afterwards in so very peculiar and tech- 
nical a sense. 



[35 A 

Kara ravra e^ovcrrjs ovcnas icai rrjs av irepi ra crcapara <ytyvo- 
fj,epicrrfjs rplrov e dfKpoiv ev pea-at ^vveKepdcraro ovcnas 
', rrjs re ravrov cpvcrews Kal rrjs darepov, Kal Kara ravra 
^vvecrrrjcrev ev fj,ecr<p rov re d/juepovs avraiv Kal rov Kara ra 
5 <rfafj,ara pepicrrov' Kal rpla \a(3a>v avra ovra a-vveKepdcraro els 
piav travra IBeav, rrjv darepov cpvcrtv Bva-ftiKrov ovcrav els ravrov 
vvap/J,6rr(0v (Sla* /jityvvs Be jj,erd rrjs ovcrias Kal K rpuav Troir)- B 
ev, TrdXiv o\ov rovro /j,oipa<? ocras TrpocrrJKe Btevet/jiev, 
Be CK re ravrov Kal Oarepov Kal rijs ova-las fJLe^^fjievrjv. 
o Be Biaipelv &Se. plav d(f>el\e TO irpwrov diro iravros 
fiolpav, fierd Be ravrrjv d(pijpi, 8t,7T\aa-iav ravrrjs, rrjv S' av rplrrjv 
r)pio\iav p.ev rfjs Bevrepas, rpi7r\aa-iav Be rr)s irpwr^s, rerdprrjv 
3 Post <pvfffws delevi av irtpi, quae cum consensu codicum retinent SZ : inclusit H. 

This passage is obviously one of the 
most important in the dialogue; and it 
is necessary to use the utmost care in 
interpreting the terms, ravrov and Qare- 
pov are in their widest and most radical 
sense respectively the principle of unity 
and identity and the principle of multi- 
plicity and difference : but they are like- 
wise used in special applications of these 
significations. Such applications are ^ 
dfj^piaros ovffia and i) irepirci ffi!ifj.ara yiyvo- 
fi^v-ij ftfpurrJi, which are identical but not 
coextensive with ravrov and Oarepov. Re- 
garded objectively, ravrov is the element 
of changeless unity in the KOOTAOJ, the 
intelligible dpx^, Odrepov is the plurality 
of variable phenomena, in which the 
primal unity is materially and visibly 
manifested. The first is rj dutpicrros ov<ria, 
pure mind as it is in its own nature, the 
second is mind as it becomes diffe- 
rentiated into material existence. Re- 
garded subjectively, ravrov is that faculty 
in the world-soul which deals with the 
intelligible unity, Oarepov that which 
deals with sensible multiplicity. One is 
the simple activity of thought as such, 
the other the operation of thought as 
subjected to the conditions of time and 

But what is ovfflaf This is stated by 
Plato to be rplrov t% dfJ.<f>otv ev fiff<p rijs 

re TOLVTOV 0i/crews KO.I rrjs TOV ertpov a 
third term arising from the other two 
and intermediate between them. I think 
the nature of ovcrla will be made clearest 
if we take the case of an individual soul. 
Every one has (i) the faculty of pure 
thought, of reasoning apart from sen- 
sation, (2) the faculty of perceiving sen- 
sible impressions. Now if we hold that 
these two faculties are simply processes 
which go on in the brain, so that thought 
and perception are merely affections of 
the substance of the brain and nothing 
more there is an end : there is no ov<rla : 
the two faculties have no bond of union 
further than they are affections of the 
same brain. But if we consider, as Plato 
did, that the physical action of the brain 
which accompanies thought and sen- 
sation does not constitute these, but that 
there is a thinking and sentient substance 
which acts by means of these brain-pro- 
cesses, at once we have a unity : the two 
faculties are no longer independent phy- 
sical processes but diverse activities of 
one and the same intelligence : the sub- 
ject is no more a series of consciousnesses 
but a conscious personality. Just so the 
Koffnos, being a sentient intelligence, 
must be conscious of itself as a whole : 
by ravrov it apprehends itself as unity, 
by Bdrepov it apprehends itself as multi- 



way. From the undivided and ever changeless substance and 
that which becomes divided in material bodies, of both these he 
mingled in the third place the form of Essence, in the midst 
between the Same and the Other; and this he composed on such 
wise between the undivided and that which is in material bodies 
divided ; and taking them, three in number, he blended them 
into one form, forcing the nature of the Other, hard as it was to 
mingle, into union with the Same. And mingling them with 
Essence and of the three making one, again he divided this into 
as many parts as was meet, each part mingled of Same and 
of Other and of Essence. And he began his dividing thus : first 
he took one portion from the whole ; then he went on to take a 
portion double of this ; and the third half as much again as the 

plicity: and as these are not apart, but 
are activities of the same thinking sub- 
ject, we have ovffla, their union as modes 
of one and the same consciousness, ovcria 
then is neither identical with ravrov or 
darepov nor a substance apart from both : 
it is the identification of the two as one 
substance. And as in the particular soul 
the reasoning and perceptive faculties 
have no independent existence of their 
own, but, if they are to exist, must co- 
exist in a soul and thus obtain ot<rla, so 
it is in the cosmic soul. Taken apart, 
both TO.VTOV and Oarepov are mere logical 
abstractions, they have no existence. 
Combined they instantly unite into a 
single ovffta, they are no longer abstract, 
but concrete. Thus ov<rla is said to be 
rpLrov t d/JKpo'ii', because it arises from 
their union. So again we see that the 
One and the Many cannot exist but in 

2. Iv fi6r] i.e. it is a bond of 
union and connecting link between them. 
I would draw special attention to the 
fact that according as they are regarded 
objectively or subjectively, a^e/w)* and 
/j.fpiffrri oi/ffla have a distinct significance: 
they are (a) ^vx'n as the primal and 
eternal ev 6v, and ij/vxh as evolved into a 
plurality of yiyv6fj.eva, (/3) ^ux 7 ? as dealing 

directly by pure thought with absolute 
unity, and i/'ux'? as dealing sensually 
with the multitude of material pheno- 

6. 8v<r|UKTov o5<rav] The element 
of difference and divergency was natu- 
rally refractory and hard to force into 
union with the rest. Plato, while con- 
vinced of the necessity of conciliating 
the opposites ev and TroXXd, is fully alive 
to the magnitude of the undertaking. 

10. T(PXTO 8i Sicupeiv c58] Here 
Plato is really pythagorising. The num- 
bers which follow are those which com- 
pose the geometrical rerpaKTbs of the 
Pythagoreans. This rerpaKrto is double, 
proceeding in one branch from i to 2 3 , 
in the other from i to 3 3 , thus : 



It will be observed that the sum of the 
first six numbers, i, 2, 3, 4, 8, 9 equals 
the last, 27. This reTpaicri/s was sig- 
nificant of many things to the Pytha- 
goreans : of these it will suffice to mention 
one, which Plato may have had in view 
in selecting these numbers : i denotes 
the point ; then in the 5iir\dffia 

io8 ITAATflNOS [35 c- 

Se TTJS Bevrepas SnrXrjv, Tre/zTTT^i/ 8e rpi7r\rjv rrjf rpirrjs, rrjv 8' C 

T7?9 7T/3COT779' fjierd 8e ravra ffvveTrXtjpovTo TCI re 
Kal Tpi7r\dcria Sia&rijfjiaTa, fjuoipas ert eKeiOev dirorefivdiv Kal 36 A 

5 T40619 649 TO fJLCTagv TOVTQJV, OOtTTe V Kd<TT(p Sia<rT1Jfjl,aTl SvO 

elvac /i6<roT7;Ta9, TTJV p^v Tavro) fiepet r<av aKpwv avrwv inrepe- 
vpvcrav Kal vTrepe-^ofjbevrjv, Trjv 8e icna ftev Kar dpiOfjuov vTrepe- 
%ov(rav, term Be vTrepe^ofjuevrjv Tj^idXicov Se Siaa'rda'ecijv Kal 
eTTirpircav Kal eiroySocov jevo/jievcov e'/c rovrav rwv 8e<r(j,a)V ev 
10 Tat9 7rp6<r0ev 8ia(rrdcr(7i, rw rov e7royoov ^iacrrrj/MaTi rd eVi- B 

para 2 stands for the straight line, 4 for 
the rectilinear plane, 8 for the rectilinear 
solid. In the rpiTrXtfcria Siao-nJ/tara 3 is 
the curved line, g the curvilinear super- 
ficies, 27 the curvilinear solid. These 
numbers also, as we presently see, form 
the basis of a musical scale. The simple 
Pythagorean Terpa/criyy, 1 + 2 + 3 + 4=10 
is not employed by Plato. 

I. ir^iATmiv 84 TpiirXtjv TTJS Tp-n]s] 
Note that g is prior in the enumeration to 
8 : this is because 9 is a lower power, being 
the square of 3, while 8 is the cube of 2. 

3. jierd 84 ravra o-uvcirXTjpovTo] 
Next between every two members of the 
double and triple intervals severally he 

inserted two means, the harmonical and 
the arithmetical. The harmonical mean 
is such that it exceeds the lesser extreme 
and is exceeded by the greater in the 
same fraction of each extreme respec- 
tively : i.e. if x and y be the extremes and 

3C V 

m the mean, jc+ - = y - =m. Thearith- 
n n 

metical mean exceeds the lesser extreme by 
the same number whereby it is exceeded 
by the greater extreme, x + n =y -n m. 
Thus between 6 and 1 2 we have 8 as the 
harmonical mean, 9 as the arithmetical. 
Now inserting these means in the two series 
above, we get 

In the SnrXcurta 


*, J, 2, |, 3> 4, f, 6, 8: 

In the rpnrXacria Staff -nj^ara 1, -, i, 3, - , 6, 9, -, 1 8, 27- 

8. ^|iioXfo>v 8f| It will be seen that 
the first of the two series given in the 
preceding note proceeds regularly in the 
ratios |, f , &c ; while the second pro- 
ceeds in the ratios f , |, | &c : there being 
in the first series three sets of $, f , $, in 
the second three sets of |, |, f. 

10. Tp TOV enxrySoov StaoT-rjixan] In 
order to understand this passage it is only 
necessary to bear in mind one or two 
simple acoustical facts. The pitch of a 
musical note depends upon the rapidity 
with which the sounding body vibrates. 
To take for example two vibrating strings: 
if one string be twice the length of the 
other, the shorter string will, other things 

being equal, produce twice as many vi- 
brations in a given time as the longer 
and will give a note an octave above the 
first. Another string $ the length of the 
first will give the fifth above the second 
string, or the twelfth above the first. 
Therefore we express the octave by the 
ratio i : 2 and the fifth by 2 : 3. The 
other ratios with which we are here con- 
cerned are 3 : 4, which gives the fourth ; 
8 : 9, which gives a whole tone; 16 : 27, 
which gives the (Pythagorean) major 
sixth ; and 243 : 256, which will be treated 
of presently, but which is very nearly a 
semitone. Now in reckoning these ratios 
we may either take as our basis the num- 

36 B] 



second and triple of the first; the fourth double of the second ; 
the fifth three times the third ; the sixth eight times the first, 
the seventh twenty-seven times the first. After that, he filled up 
the interval between the powers of two and of three by severing 
yet more from the original mass and placing it between them in 
such a manner that within each interval were two means, the 
first exceeding one extreme in the same proportion as it was 
exceeded by the other, the second by the same number exceed- 
ing the one as it was exceeded by the other. And whereas by 
these links there were formed in the original intervals new 
intervals of f and f and , he went on to fill up all the intervals 
of f with that of f, leaving in each a fraction over ; and the 

her of vibrations executed in a given time Plato doubtless followed the latter plan, I 

as is the practice of modern musicians 
or the relative lengths of string required 
to produce the several notes, as was usual 
amongthe Greeks. In the first case it is ob- 
vious that the ratio expresses the octave 
upwards, in the second downwards. As 

shall follow it too that is, we shall reckon 
the scale from top to bottom. Now taking 
the dnr\dffM dicier-/] par a with their harmo- 
nical and arithmetical means, and filling 
up the intervals as Plato directs, we shall 
have : 

8:g m 8:9 8:9 8:9 313 

8:9 8:9 

i 2 

8:9 ! 

> ! 

64 3 

32 3 
'9 gi f 

3 17 
2 16 

= 9 8:9 8:9 




3 Q /c. 



8:9 8:9 




The small figures denote the ratio between each term and its successor. 
Now giving these intervals their musical value, we get the following scale : 


The original notes of the rer/xt/crfo 
are marked as semi breves, the means as 
minims, and the insertions of the tirbySoa 
and Xelfjifiara as crotchets. Thus we get 
a system of three octaves in the Dorian 
mode, which was identical with one form 
of our modern minor scale. 

So far all is simple. But it is not 
so easy to determine how the scale of 

Tpiir\dffia. diaffr^fj-ara should be con- 
structed. The most obvious method is 
to continue the system of tirlrpiTa or te- 
trachords in the lower octaves by sup- 
plying the octaves of the means belonging 
to the binary system. Thus we shall 
have one continuous scale formed of the 
two sets of intervals : we shall add two 
more lines to our series of numbers, 



[36 B 

rptra frdvra ^vvejrX'rjpovro, XeiTTtwi/ avrwv etcdffrov fioptov, T^? 
rot) fiopiov TavTijS SiaoT<z<7e&><? Xet</>#ei<r779 dpiO/jiOv Trpbs dpiffpov 
e^ova-rj^ TOI)? '6pov$ eg Kal TrevrrjKovra Kal Siatcoo-iwv Trpo? rpia 
teal rerrapaKovra ical &iatc6<Tia. Kal 8rj Kal TO /u^#ei>, e ov 
5 ravra tcarere/jLvev, ovrws r}8r) irav dva\u>Ki. ravrrjv ovv rrjv 
gva-rafftv iraaav St,7r\f)V Kara pfjicos a")(l<ra<s fj,<rr)V Trpos peffrjv 
exarepav d\\ij\ai<; olov ^t Trpo<rf3a\wv KarKafi\ffv, et9 ev KVK\tp C 

ijj roO: T^J 5^ roO H cum re. A. 4 ccal ST? Kai : alterum Kal omittunt SZ. 

5 "" : 

. 8l 
8, 9, -g , 

Trdvr A. dvaXti/cei dedi cum A. dj^Xcim H. KaravaXti/cet SZ. 

32 27 243 g where 12, 16, 24 are derived from the 
3 * * 2 * 16 * octaves of the former series : and we shall 
64 , continue the scale thus from where it 

, - 4 . Z7 

left off : 
89 16 27 



^^ r*~~t 



*-~^ 9 **~ 

_ 1 

But a serious, if not fatal, objection to 
this scale is that it does not constitute a 
perfect system or systems in any one of the 
Greek modes. It would seem then as if 
we must, with Westphal (Musik d. gr. 

-&- ?- 

Alterthums), construct thetriple scalequite 
independently of the other. Then for each 
of the intervals i : 3, 3 : 9, 9 : 27 we shall 
have three dodecachords : 











-1 r 

\^7 t^ ^* & 



1 1 i 




Here we have three conjunct dodeca- 
chords in the Dorian or Aeolian mode, 
passing from A minor to D minor and 

G minor. This scale, which is identical 
with that given by Westphal, does not 
seem free from objection ; but it is more 



ii i 

terms of the interval forming this fraction are in the numerical 
proportion of 2$6 to 243. By this time the mixture, whence he 
cut off these portions, was all used up. Next he cleft the 
structure so formed lengthwise into two halves, and laying the 
two so as to meet in the centre in the shape of the letter X, he 
bent them into a circle and joined them, causing them to meet 

satisfactory than any other I can suggest. 
The scale given by Proklos is not suit- 
able ; nor yet one which he attributes to 
Severus, who, supposing him to start 
from A minor, modulates as far as C 
minor. The extent of Plato's scale, four 
octaves and a major sixth, is far greater 
than any that actually occurred in Greek 
music, which employed at most but two 
octaves. It has been suggested by Proklos 
that Plato's reason for using so extensive 
a scale is that faxi) has to apprehend 
not only spirit but matter, which has 
three dimensions; hence in the symbol 
the cubes 8 and 27 were required. 

T. Xcforwv avTwv eKaorov fxopiov] 
Taking the first tetrachord of our scale, 
E to B, if we proceed to insert as many 
Tr6y8oa as we can, we find we can intro- 
duce two, viz. E to D, D to C : a third 
would take us to Bb instead of B. This 
interval then, C to B, is the /japiov which 
remains over. This is called the \eifj./j,a 
and has the ratio 243 : 256. The Py- 
thagoreans held that the tone cannot be 
divided into two equal parts, because 
there is not a rational mean between 8 
and 9 : they accordingly distributed it 

into a minor semitone or Xei/x/na, ^|, and 

., > / 2048 r 

a maior semitone or aTroro/u/n, ---; of 


which two the product =-. The Pytha- 
gorean \i/ is slightly less than the 
' natural ' semitone, which is ^| or . 

ID 256 

The pseudo-Timaeus Locrus in his ab- 
stract of this passage (96 B) says the num- 
ber of terms in the series is 36 : a similar 
view is held, according to Proklos, by 
some of the old Platonists ; apparently 

for no other reason than that 36 is the 
sum of another double TerpaKTi/s given by 
Plutarch, consisting of the first four odd 
and the first four even numbers. This 
number of terms is gained by forming the 
two scales separately and then combining 
them so that the apotome twice occurs ; 
e.g. C, B, Bb, A: the interval C B 
being a Xet/x./u.a, the interval B Bb is an 
cLTTOTOfj.^. But the apotome is totally 
foreign to Plato's scale, which is Sidrovov 
ffvvrovov of the strictest kind. Nor is there 
any Greek scale which would tolerate 
three half-tones successively : even in the 
X/w/ia roviaioi' only two occur in suc- 
cession. Nor do I see on what plan the 
apotome could be made to occur twice 
and no more. Therefore, although this 
view is supported by no less an authority 
than Bockh, we must refuse to attribute 
to Plato a scale which is altogether bar- 

TTJS TOV [iopCov] rrjs 8t has been 
retained by Hermann, who defends it as 
coordinating Xetiruv and <?xw< r7 ? J ' But it 
seems to me rather clumsy. 

7. otov x^ irpoo-poXwv] We are to 
conceive the soul, after having been duly 
blended and having received her mathe- 
matical ratios, as extended like a hori- 
zontal band : then the creator cleaves it 
lengthwise and lays the two strips across 
each other in the shape of the letter X 
(i.e. at an acute angle), and so that the 
two centres coincide : next he bends them 
both round till the ends meet, so that 
each becomes a circle touching the other 
at a point in their circumferences oppo- 
site to the original point of contact. Thus 
we have two circles bisecting each other 


[36 c- 

as avrals re xal dXKrjXais ev reS KaravrtKpv rfj$ 7rpoo-/3o- 
\ij<j, KCU rf) Kara ravra xal ev ravra> Trepiayopevrj Ktvrjo-ei Treptf 
avrds e\a/3e, teal rov /j,ev e&>, rov 8' ei/ro? eTroieiro rwv KVK\O>V. 
rrjv fjiev ovv %(!) (fropdv 7re<j)r/iJbi<Tv elvat rrjs ravrov (f>v<r e&)<>, rrjv 
5 8' eVro? T7<> darepov. rrjv fiev 8r) ravrov Kara 7r\evpdv eVt Se^ia 
Treptrjyaye, rrjv 8e 0arepov Kara Sidfterpov eV dpicrrepd, Kparos 
5' e8d)K rf) ravrov KOI 6/iot'ou Trepiffropa.' piav ydp avrrjv ao"%i- D 
<rrov clave, rrjv 8' eWo9 cr^to-a? e^a-^y cirra KVK\OVS avlffOVS Kara 

3 ai/ras : ai)r^j A. 

and inclined at an acute angle. The 
obliquity of the inclination is insisted on, 
because, as we shall presently see, the 
two circles represent respectively (amongst 
other things) the equator and the ecliptic. 

2. ircpig avrds {\af3e] As the soul 
was interfused throughout the whole 
sphere of the universe, we must regard 
the two circles simply as a framework, so 
to speak, denoting the directions of the 
two movements. These two circles are 
encompassed by a moving spherical en- 
velope, being the circumference of the 
entire sphere of soul, revolving Kara rainh. 
KOI tv ravrif. 

3. rAv jUv 8] The circle of the 
Same is made exterior, because it was to 
control the circle of the Other, and also 
because it symbolises the sphere of the 
fixed stars. 

5. Kara irXevpdv] This expression 
will be readily understood by means of 
the accompanying diagram. ACE, CDG 

are two circles in different planes, cutting 
each other at the points C, D. AB and 

CD are their respective diameters, bisect- 
ing one another in H. The dotted lines 
are a parallelogram inscribed in the circle 
A CE, having its sides ED, CF parallel 
to AB and having CD for its diagonal. 
The rotation of the circle ACE, which is 
the circle of the Same, is /card ir\evpai>, 
in the direction of DE ; that is, its axis is 
perpendicular to DE or AB, and it re- 
volves from east to west. CDG, the circle 
of the Other, rotates /card dia^ierpov, i.e. 
in the direction of the diagonal CD, from 
WSW to ENE. The Greek term 17 5ta- 
/ierpos generally means diagonal, not dia- 
meter. Proklos sees a special significance 
in the circle of the Other moving /card 
Siafj-erpov, inasmuch as (the sides of the 
rectangle being expressed by integral 
numbers) the diagonal is irrational. It is 
quite possible that Plato may have thought 
of this : but, as Bockh has remarked, un- 
less the rectangle is a square, the diagonal 
is not necessarily a surd : e.g. if the sides 
are 3 and 4, the diagonal will be 5. 

m Scgid.. eir dpurrcpa] This has 
given rise to much discussion, because 
according to the usual Greek nomencla- 
ture the east was the right side of the 
heavens and the west the left : and so we 
have it in Laws 760 D TO 5' twi 8eia 717- 
vtffOw rb irpbs &o : cf. Epinomis 987 B. 
This mode of reckoning seems to have 
arisen from the fact that the Greek diviners 
stood facing the north in taking the 
omens. I think the explanation of Plato's 
present departure from ordinary custom 
is simple enough. The diurnal motion 


themselves and each other at a point opposite to that of their 
original contact : and he comprehended them in the motion that 
revolves uniformly on the same axis, and one of the circles he 
made exterior and one interior. The exterior motion he named 
the motion of the Same, the interior that of the Other. And 
the circle of the Same he made revolve to the right by way of 
the side, that of the Other to the left by way of the diagonal. 
And he gave the supremacy to the motion of the same and 
uniform, for he left that single and undivided ; but the inner 
circle he cleft into seven unequal circles in the proportion of the 

of the universe is visible only by the 
daily motion of the heavenly bodies, espe- 
cially the sun. An observer in Europe 
can only see the sun's motions by looking 
towards the south, when of course the 
west is on his right hand : compare Pliny 
natur. hist. VI 24 (of some visitors from 
the tropics) sed maxume rnirum iis erat 
umbras suas in nostrum caelum cadere, 
non in suum, solemque a laeva oriri et in 
dextram occidere potius quam e diverse. 
Plato's use of the terms right and left 
seems then perfectly natural. The uni- 
verse being a sphere, Plato knew that the 
right and left, like up and down, are per- 
fectly arbitrary terms (see 62 c foil.) and 
he therefore did not hesitate to apply 
them just as suited his purpose. Those 
who are curious on the subject may find 
(to put it mildly) some very singular 
arguing in the opposite sense in Aristotle 
de caelo n ii 284 b 6 foil. 

6. Kpd-ros 8' e'ScuKe TTJ TO.VTOV] That 
is, while the circle of the Other retains 
its independent rotation round its own 
centre, it is also carried round by the revo- 
lution of the Same. 

<cr\irTov tUeurt] Note that though the 
circle of the Same is one and undivided, 
it contains the same mathematical ratios 
as the Other: this clearly signifies that 
the multiplicity of the Other is only a 
different form of the unity of the Same 
there exists in immaterial soul a law or 
principle which, when expressed in terms 
of matter (or here rather of the apprehen- 

P. T. 

sion of matter), assumes the form of these 
mathematical ratios. Note also that the 
portion of the soul which constitutes the 
circle of the Same is composed both of 
Same and of Other, as also is the circle of 
the Same. The antithesis Same and Other 
pervades all ovcria. from highest to lowest. 

8. <rxfoas <S a X^l The circle of the 
Other is subdivided into seven concen- 
tric circles corresponding to the seven 
planets which were reckoned in Plato's 
day. These are ordered at distances from 
the earth corresponding to the seven num- 
bers of the rerpa.KT'Lis : i represents the 
distance of the moon, 2 the sun, 3 Venus, 
4 Mercury, 8 Mars, 9 Jupiter, 27 Saturn. 

The question might suggest itself, how 
would Plato have been affected, had he 
become aware that the real position of 
the heavenly bodies is widely different 
from his supposition? In my judgment 
he would have been absolutely uncon- 
cerned. How these bodies are situated 
is to him a matter of profound indiffer- 
ence : what does concern him is that where- 
ever they are and whatever they do should 
be the result of the orderly evolution of 
vous. For it should be borne in mind 
that, strange and fantastic as this ^v\o- 
yovia may seem at first sight, Plato has 
but one aim steadily in view throughout. 
Whatever exists and happens in material 
nature is simply the material symbol of 
immaterial truth : it is the inevitable re- 
sult of the regular evolution of spirit, 
according to the eternal law of its nature, 


nAATHNOS [36 i>- 

rov Snr\a<riov Kal rpnr\ao-iov Bidcrrao~iv efcdffrrjv, ovo~<av 
eKarepwv rpidav, Kara rdvavrla fiev aXX?;Xot9 7rpoo~era^ev levat 
rovs KVK\OVS, rd%ei, Be rpel? fj,ev 6/zot'a)9, roi)9 Be rerrapas d 
Xot9 Kal Tot9 rpLo~\v dvo/j,ol(i)<f, ev \6y(p Be ^)epo/iez/ou9. 

5 IX. 'Eiret Be Kara vovv rw ^vvicrravn rrdcra 77 rr}9 
%uo~rao-i<i eyeyevyro, fierd rovro Trdv TO o-wfiaroeiBes evrbs 
ereKraivero Kal [tecrov p>eo"rj ^vvayaycav irpoo-rjpfJLorrev r) 8' e'/c E 
fj,eo~ov 7rpo9 rov ea^arov ovpavov rrdvrrj Bia7T\aKeicra KVK\W re 
avrov egaOev TreptAcaXi/'^raa'a, avrrj ev avrfj (rrpe^ofjievrj, Qeiav 

10 <*PX*i v tfp aT aTravo-Tov Kal e/z.^poi/o? /3toi> ?rpo9 rov ^vp,rcavra 
Xpovov. Kal TO /j,ev Brj o~wfj.a oparov ovpavov yeyovev, avrr/ Be 

ev, \oyio~fjiov Be fj,ereyovo~a Kal dp/j,ovia$ ^vyij, rwv 37 A 

e re ovrwv VTTO rov parov pari] 


3 dXXvjXotJ : aXXijXoty re S. 

in corporeal manifestation. Plato does 
not of course mean that the immaterial 
and indivisible essence of soul is com- 
posed of circles and distributed in mathe- 
matical proportions. The circle is with 
him a common symbol of the activity of 
thought : and by assigning the harmonic 
numbers to soul he declares that whatever 
relations or harmonies, mathematical or 
otherwise, are found in the world of space 
and time, these are the natural expression 
in material terms of some eternal law of 
soul. It is perhaps advisable to notice 
this, because of the amusing literalness 
with which Aristotle has treated the sub- 
ject in dc ammo, I iii 4O7 a 2 foil. a piece 
of criticism which at first it is hard to 
believe was intended seriously. 

2. Kara rdvavrfa] As seven circles 
cannot all be contrary each to each, we 
are to suppose that the three planets hav- 
ing the same period revolve in one direc- 
tion, and the four others in the opposite. 
It is usually supposed that Mercury and 
Venus alone have the contrary motion ; 
but if Plato's theory is to be anything 
like an explanation of the facts, the sun 
must have the same direction as these 
two: see note on 38 u rrjv 5' ivavriav el- 
avT$ 5vi>a.(jut>, where the motive 

8 StaTrXaKeio-a : 5iO7rXe/cet<ra A. 

for this arrangement is discussed. In the 
parallel passage of the Republic, 6160 
617 c, it is not said that any of the planets 
have a contrary motion, though it is stated 
that Venus, Mercury and the Sun com- 
plete their orbits in the same period. 
The harmonic numbers of the Timaeus 
seem to be represented by the eight 
Sirens, who stood on the <r<f>!>v8v\oi, each 
singing one tone. In the Republic there 
are eight spheres, because the fixed stars 
are included, which here are assigned to 
the circle of the Same. For Aristotle's 
views about the music of the spheres see 
de caelo II ix 29o b 12 foil.: he thinks the 
idea K0fj.\f/6v, ^u/X&, and /j.oixriKbi', but 
cannot believe it. 

36 D 37 c, c. ix. So when God had 
ended the framing of the soul to his 
mind, next he formed within her all the 
visible body of the universe : but she her- 
self is invisible, the noblest creation of the 
most perfect creator. And seeing that 
she is composed of Same and Other and 
Essence, whenever she comes in contact 
with aught that has being, be it divided 
or indivisible, she discerns sameness in it 
and difference and all else that is pre- 
dicable of it. And her verdict is true 
both concerning material and immaterial 

37 A] 


double and triple intervals severally, each being three in number; 
and he appointed that the circles should move in opposite 
directions, three at the same speed, the other four differing 
in speed from the three and among themselves, yet moving in a 
due ratio. 

IX. Now after that the framing of the soul was finished to 
the mind of him that framed her, next he fashioned within her 
all that is bodily, and he drew them together and fitted them 
middle to middle. And from the midst even unto the ends 
of heaven she was woven in everywhere and encompassed it 
around from without, and having her movement in herself 
she began a divine beginning of endless and reasonable life for 
ever and evermore. Now the body of the universe has been 
created visible ; but she is invisible, and she, even soul, has part 
in reason and in harmony. And whereas she is made by the 
best of all whereunto belong reason and eternal being, so she is 

existence : for when, by the circle of the 
Other she deals with sensibles, she forms 
sure opinions and beliefs ; but when by 
the circle of the Same she apprehends 
intelligible being, then knowledge and 
reason, which soul alone possesses, are 
made perfect in her. 

5. Kara, vovv] Probably, as in Phaedo 
97 D, there is a double meaning in these 
words ' to his mind ', and ' according to 
reason '. 

6. (itrcL TOUTO] TO dt pera. TOVTO n$i 
XpoviKov 77-0X0/377$, dXXa Tdews arj/jLavri- 
KOV, says Proklos very rightly. 

7. fit'crov n&nj] Soul, being imma- 
terial, has of course no centre. The 
phrase simply means that the whole 
sphere of material nature from centre to 
circumference was instinct with the in- 
dwelling vital force. iravT-g SiaTrXa/ceiera, 
i.e. she interpenetrated its every particle, 
being everywhere present in her two 
modes of Same and of Other. 

9. Ka>9v irpiKoXm|/a<ra] See note 
on 34 B. Plutarch de anitn. procr. 21 
says Palto is &<nrtp dTrwtfoi^uevos T?)S ^'I'X'?* 
TT)t> IK o-w/uaTos ytveffiv. Compare Plotinos 
tnnead II ix 7 Iv yap 777 Trdffj; \f/i< 

<j>ij(ns SeSefdvij r/Sij ffvvSei o dV 
avrr) 5 rj rod Travrbs ^vx^l owe 
civ dtoiro VTT& TUV vir' avrfjs deSf/jt^vuv. 

10. Y[paTo] Again of course a begin- 
ning Acar' iirivoi.a.v only. 

1 1 . Kal T& (liv 8^ (Tw^a] So Laws 
898 D r/Xiou ?ras dvOpuiros 


12. \OYWTJAOV Si p.T^xov<ra Kal dp- 
[j.ovias J/vxi]] Notwithstanding Stall- 
baum's defence of ^vx^i, I feel strong 
misgivings as to its genuineness : its 
position is strange and disturbs the con- 

TWV vot]To>v act rt OVTWV] It is very 
significant that the drj/juovpybs is iden- 
tified with the object of reason, voCs 
with vorjTov. Here then we have another 
token that the S^ioup'yos is merely a 
mythological representative of univer- 
sal vo\h which evolves itself in the 
form of the /cieryuoy. Still more remark- 
able is the use of XaytffTiK&v below in 
37 c. There is no other passage in 
Plato where XoyiffTiK&v is contrasted with 
al<?6r)T<a> : the regular term is of course 
VOTITOV. It is surely impossible that Plato 
could have substituted XoyiffTiKov for voi\- 



[37 A 

yevvrjBevrwv. are ovv K rfjs ravrov teal rfjs Oarepov <f}v<re<i)<; 
etc re ovo-las rptwv rovrwv crvyKpadelcra fAoipwv, Kal dvd \6yov 
pepurOeiaa Kal gvvBeOeia-a, avrrj re dvaKVK\ovf4evr) TT/)O? avrrfv, 
orav ovffiav ffKeBaarrrjv e%ovr6<; nvos e^aTrrrjrai teal orav a/j.e- 

5 picrrov, \eyei Kivovfievr) Bid rcdcr^ eavrrjs, oV&> T' av n ravrov y 
Kal orov av erepov, rrpds o ri re ftdXiara Kal OTry ical OTTCO? Kal B 
OTTore %vn(3aivei Kara rd yiyvoaevd re TT/JO? exaarov e/cacrra 
elvai, Kal trdcf^eiv Kal rrpos rd Kara ravrd e%ovra dei- \6yos 
Be o Kara ravrov d\v)0ri<s ryiyvofievos rrepi re Odrepov wv Kal rrepl 

10 TO ravrov, ev rq> Kivovf^evro v(f) avrov (f)ep6fj,evo<> avev (pdoyyov 
Kal tfxr]?, orav fiev rrepl TO cuf&^riv yiyvijrai, Kal 6 rov Oarepov 
KVK\O<$ op#o9 wv ei? irda-av avrd rrjv "^fv^v BiayyeiXy, Bo^ai 
Kal TTicrTet? yiyvovrat /SeySatot Kal dXyOeiv orav $e av rcepl TO 
\oyia-riKov y Kal o rov ravrov KVK\O<> evrpo^of <av avrd fj.yvv<rr), c 

15 vovs eTTia-rrifiTj re e% dvdyKi)? dirore\elrai- rovrw Be ev w r<Sv 

1 i-vfj.f3a.ivei : %vfi.fia.lvt)i A. 9 uv : ov AH. 12 oirri scrips! : avrov AHSZ. 

rbv until he had reached a period in his 
metaphysic where he deliberately affirmed 
the identity of thought and its object. 
I believe also his present use both of ^077- 
r&v and of \<yyiaTu<bv is purposely de- 
signed to draw attention to this. 

3. p.pio-0to-a Kal vvS0ci(ra] ntpia- 
Oftffa refers to the original distribution of 
the soul according to the seven numbers 
of the TfrpaKTvs, {wSefletera to the intro- 
duction of the deff^ol, the arithmetical 
and harmonical means which mediated 
between them. 

avrtj T dvaxvicXovplvT] irpos avrrfv] 
This is merely Plato's favourite meta- 
phor describing the activity of thought, 
which is complete and perfect in itself. 

4. ovo-Cav o-KcSao-rijv] Formerly called 
TI /caret TCI crwjuara nepitrr^ : i. e. ofiffia 
which appears in the form of plurality, 
sensible phenomena, opposed to dfttpuT- 
TOC, which is voyrbv. 

5. KLvo\j(jLe'vT] Sta iraa-iis tavriis] This 
is the consequence of the soul being com- 
posed not only of ravrbv and Odrfpov but 
of ovffia. Had the circles of Same and 
Other been the only possession of the 
soul, the experiences of each circle might 

have been confined to it : but now, since 
the elements of rairbv and 6&repov are 
unified in ov<rta, the reports received 
from either circle are the property of the 
whole soul. 

OTW T' av TI ravrAv $] Stallbaum, 
affirming that no one has hitherto under- 
stood this passage, takes the antecedent 
of OT<J) as the subject of ^v/jL^atvei : ' she 
declares of that wherewith anything is 
the same and wherefrom it is different, 
in relation to what &c'. It may well be 
doubted whether he has thus improved 
upon his predecessors. Surely the dis- 
cernment of sameness and difference is a 
function necessarily belonging to soul 
and necessarily included in the catalogue 
of her functions : yet Stallbaum's render- 
ing excludes it from that catalogue. The 
fact that we have ory ai> y, not ory ^or/, 
does not really favour his view 'with 
whatsoever a thing may be the same, she 
declares it the same'. I coincide then 
with the other interpreters in regarding the 
whole sentence from ory T' an as indirect 
interrogation subordinate to \4yei. 

6. irpos o rl rt (idXicrra] Lindau has 
justly remarked that all or nearly all 




the best of all that is brought into being. Therefore since she is 
formed of the nature of Same and of Other and of Being, of these 
three portions blended, in due proportion divided and bound 
together, and turns about and returns into herself, whenever she 
touches aught that has manifold existence or aught that has 
undivided, she is stirred through all her substance, and she tells 
that wherewith the thing is same and that wherefrom it is 
different, and in what relation or place or manner or time 
it comes to pass both in the region of the changing and in the 
region of the changeless that each thing affects another and 
is affected. This word of hers is true alike, whether it deal with 
Same or with Other, without voice or sound in the Self-moved 
arising ; and when she is busied with the sensible, and the circle 
of the Other, being true, announces it throughout all the soul, 
then are formed sure opinions and true beliefs ; and when she is 
busy with the rational, and the circle of the Same declares 
it, running smoothly, then reason and knowledge cannot but be 
made perfect. And in whatsoever existing thing these two are 

Aristotle's ten categories are to be found 
in this sentence. 

8. irpAs TO, Kara ravrd] This phrase 
is exactly parallel to (caret ra yiyvofitva. 
above. The only reason for the change 
of preposition is the obvious lack of eu- 
phony in /card TO, Kara ravrd. 

Xo-yos] 'her verdict '. \6yos = o \eyei, 
what she pronounces concerning that 
which is submitted to her judgment. 
Stallbaum aptly refers to Sophist 263 E 
OVKOVV didvoia. ntv Ka.1 X<xyos ravrov ir\7]i> 
6 fj.ti> eVroj r^r tyvxfis irpbs avrijv SidXoyos 
dvev <f>wvris yiyvop.evos TOUT' avro tj/juv 
diruvo/j.d<rO-t], Sidvoia. See too Philebus 
39 A, and Theaetetus 189 E, where So- 
krates defines Siavoeiffdat. as \6yov ov OUTTJ 
irpos avTTjv rj \Jsvxrj die^pxfrat wepi uv oV 


9. Kara TO.VTOV is adverbial, 'equally': 
there is nothing in it of the technical 
sense of TO.VTOV. 

10. v TU> Kivov|icvu> v<|>' avrov] i.e. iv 
wxfi being ayroK/PT/ros. 

1 2. op0is wv] Proklos draws attention 

to the difference of the language applied 
to the two circles; of the circle of the 
Same it is said efirpoxos <5v. The change 
of expression is readily understood if we 
turn to 43 D foil, where Plato is speaking 
of the disturbance of the circles by the 
continuous influx, of bodily nutriment : 
the circle of the Other is distorted and 
displaced, but the circle of the Same is 
only blocked (eir^riaav). 

cis ird<rav avra. TT\V fyv)($v Siayye&fl] 
The ms. reading ai!roO is clearly wrong, 
though Martin defends it. Stallbaum 
proposes O.VTO : but as we presently have 
aura referring to Xo7i<rriKci', that is per- 
haps more likely to be right here. 

13. p'paioi Kal aXi]0cis] There is a 
slight chiasmus : /3^/3atot is appropriate to 
jr/orets and aX^els to 5oat. 

7Tpl r6 XoYurriKiv fl] Of the peculiar 
use of XoyiffTiKov I have already spoken. 
Note however that the verb is changed 
from ylyvriTai to $ and for Siayyei'X?; we 
have the more authoritative word ^vvarf. 

15. TOVTW &] There has been much 



ovrwv eyyiyvecrffov, dv Trore ri<j avro a\\o TrXrjv ^fv^rjv eiTrrj, irav 
fj,a\\ov 77 rdXrjBes epei. 

X. 'fl? oe Kivrjdev avro KOI o3i> evoyae rwv diSiwv 0edov 
76701/05 uya\aa 6 yevvrjcras Trarrjp, rjydadr) re Kal ev(f)pav0el<; en 

5 8rj fj,d\\ov ofjioiov TT/JO? TO 7rapdBeiyfj.a eTrevoijo-ev direpydcraaOai. 
KaOcnrep ovv avro rvy%avei %wov diBiov ov, ical rooe TO rcav oirrtus D 
t9 Svvafjiiv CTre^iptjo'e roiovrov asjroreXelv. r) fj,ev ovv rov %<ov 
(pv(ri<> rvy%avV ov&a alwvios. KOI rovro /iei> 8rj rut yevvrjra) 
7rapTeX.o5<? Trpo&aTrreiv ovtc r\v Svvarov ei/cw 8' eirivoei tcivrjrov 

10 riva alonvos Troifjaai, /cat BiaKO<Tfj.(uv a/ia ovpavov Trotel pevovros 
ata)i>05 ev evl tear dpiO/mov lovcrav alwvtov elicova, rovrov ov Srj 

3 ivoijae : 


6 ov omittunt AS. 

g lirivofi : iirtvbei A. 

discussion as to the exact reference of 
TOI/TW. One interpretation, mentioned 
by Proklos, is to refer it to the two pairs, 
Sofcu irlffrets, vovs ^TTIOTT^I; : and this is 
practically the view of Stallbaum, who 
understands 3oa and liri<TTri/j.r). The 
natural grammatical reference however is 
to vovs firiffTrifjL-r] re, and so I believe we 
should understand it : cf. 30 B vovv 5' a5 
Xwpts ^vxfn* O.SVVO.TOV irapaytv^ffOai ry. 
No doubt it is true that 5o'a and iriffris 
are equally impossible x u ph ^ V X^ ' but 
these are functions of soul in her material 
relations, whereas the other two are 
characteristic of soul qua soul, in the 
activity of pure thought. The distinction 
between vovs and ivurr^ni) is that between 
the faculty of reason and the possession 
of knowledge. 

37 c 38 B, f. x. So when the uni- 
verse was quickened with soul, God was 
well pleased; and he bethought him to 
make it yet more like its type. And 
whereas the type is eternal and nought 
that is created can be eternal, he devised 
for it a moving image of abiding eternity, 
which we call time. And he made days 
and months and years, which are portions 
of time ; and past and future are forms of 
time, though we wrongly attribute them 
also to eternity. For of eternal Being 
we ought not to say 'it was', 'it shall 
be', but 'it is" alone: and in like manner 

we are wrong in saying 'it is' of sen- 
sible things which become and perish ; 
for these are ever fleeting and changing, 
having their existence in time. 

3. Kivt]6iv OVTO Kal wv] Motion is 
always for Plato the inalienable cha- 
racteristic of life : cf. Phaedrtis 245 E 
and Theaetetiis 153 A -rb elccu SOKOVV 
KO.I TO yiyveffOcu Kivrjtns 7rap^xi TO 5^ 
fj.rf elvai Kal TO d.Tro\\vffdai i}awxLa.. 

TWV cuSuov flcwv y e Y v os a-yaXjAa] 
This is a very singular phrase. The 
Kofffj.os we know is the image of the 
avro fov, and the creatures in it are 
images of the VO^TO. $a. Therefore the 
diSioi 6fol can be nothing else than the 
ideas. But nowhere else does Plato 
call the ideas 'gods', and the significance 
of so calling them is very hard to see. 
If however Plato wrote 6fuv (which I 
cannot help regarding as doubtful), I am 
convinced that he used this strange 
phrase w : ith some deliberate purpose in 
view; but what that purpose was, I con- 
fess myself unable to divine. The inter- 
pretation of Proklos is naught. 

6. avTJ] sc. TO irapdSfiyfj.a. 

8. My\a.v(v oio-a alwvios] Pre- 
sently Plato tells us that the past tense is 
not applicable to eternal existence: the 
use of it is however necessitated by the 
narrative form into which he has thrown 
his theory. This use of eTvyxavcv, in 



found, if a man affirm it is aught but soul, what he says will be 
anything rather than the truth. 

X. And when the father who begat it perceived the created 
image of the eternal gods, that it had motion and life, he re- 
joiced and was well pleased ; and he bethought him to make it 
yet more nearly like its pattern. Now whereas that is a living 
being eternally existent, even so he essayed to make this All the 
like to the best of his power. Now so it was that the nature of 
the ideal was eternal. But to bestow this attribute altogether 
upon a created thing was impossible ; so he bethought him to 
make a moving image of eternity, and while he was ordering 
the universe he made of eternity that abides in unity an eternal 
image moving according to number, even that which we have 

the face of the explicit declaration a few 
lines later, is an additional proof, if 
more were wanted, that the creation of 
the K6<T[j.os is pure allegory. For if 
Plato meant to be understood literally, 
he is flagrantly violating his own law. 

9. !KW 8' Imvoei] Plato's meaning 
in terming time the elKuv of eternity 
may thus be stated. As extension is 
to the immaterial, so is succession to the 
eternal. The material universe is the 
dK&v of pure being or thought: that is to 
say, it is the mode in which the One 
manifests itself in the form of multi- 
plicity. Now the two main character- 
istics of material existence are (a) ex- 
tension, (/3) succession. The universe 
then regarded as extended is the clK&v 
of poOs regarded as unextended : the 
same universe regarded as a succession 
of phenomena is the elic&v of POUJ re- 
garded as eternal. As then space is the 
image of the immaterial, so is time the 
image of the eternal : space and time 
being the conditions under which the 
spaceless and timeless tv evolves itself 
in the apprehension of finite intelli- 

ii. KttT* api0|i6v lov<rav] i.e. moving 
by measurable periods: the dpiOpos is 
the temporal reflection of the changeless 
li> of eternity. 

alwviov ttxova] This phrase surely de- 
serves more notice than it has hitherto 
obtained. In the present passage we 
have time and eternity most sharply con- 
trasted ; time being explained as a con- 
dition belonging to that which is not 
eternal. And notwithstanding this, time 
is itself declared to be eternal. Plato's care- 
ful definition of the word aiwvios entirely 
precludes the supposition that it here de- 
notes merely the everlasting duration of 
time. In what sense then is it eternal? 
I think but one answer is possible. The 
universal mind has of necessity not only 
existence in the form of unity, but also 
existence in the form of multiplicity. 
It is to the existence in multiplicity that 
time appertains. But although time is a 
condition of the phenomena contained in 
this manifold existence, that existence is 
itself eternal ; for mind is eternal whether 
existing as one or as many : its self- 
evolution is eternal, not in time. Tem- 
porality then is the attribute of the par- 
ticular things comprised in fjifpurTrj owta, 
but the mode of mind's existence which 
takes that form is eternal. It is in fact 
part of the eternal essence of mind that 
it should exist in the form of things 
which are subject to time. Thus there 
is a sense in which time may be termed 
eternal, as one element in the eternal 



[37 D- 

rj/jiepas yap /cat VVKTCIS vat fUjvaQ /cat 
eviavrovs, OVK oWa<? Trplv ovpavov yeve&Oat, Tore ufia eice'iva) E 

rrjv yeveo~iv avT&v firj^avaraf ravra Be TfdvTa 
xpovov, /cat TO T' fy TO r e<rrai ^povov yeyovoTa ecBt), a 8/7 
5 (bepovTes \ai>6dvop,ev eVc. rrjv diBiov ovtriav OVK 6p0w<i. \eyofj.ev 
yap Brj w? iji> eo~Ti re /cat ecrrat, rrj Be TO eo~Tt JAOVOV Kara TQV 
d\t]dfj \6yov irpoarjKei, TO S' // TO T' ecrTat Trepl TTJV ev xpovq) 38 A 
yevefftv lovaav TrpeTret \eyeo-0ar tcivij<rei<; yap ia-rov TO Se del 
KCITO. TavTa e-^ov aKiviJTcas OVT Trpeo-jSvTepov OVT vewTepov irpoff- 
10 rjrcet yiyvecrOai Sid %povov ovBe yeverrOai TTOTZ oi$e yeyovevai 
vvv ovB' etVaOtfi? Icreo-^at, TO Trapdirav Te ov&ev oca yeveffis Tot? 
ev alffdrjcreL <j)epofAevoi<i Trpoafj^lrev, aX\a ^povov TavTa alwva 
fUfMVfjUvov /cat /caT* dpiOfiov KVK\ovfj,evov yeyovev eiSr). /cat 
7T/3O? TOi/TOt? eTt Ta TotaSe, TO Te yeyovos elvai yeyovos /cat TO B 
15 yi.yv6/j,evov etfat yiyvofievov, CTI Be TO yevrjo-6/j.evov etvat yevr)- 
aofievov /cat TO fjirj bv /j,rj bv elrai, <&v ovBev a/c/?t/9e? \eyofiev. 
Trepl fifv ovv TOVTCOV Ta-% av OVK eii) icaipbs TrpeTrcov ev T3 

4 Kal post yv inserit A. 12 aiuva : aiwva re SZ. 15 eVt 8^ : in re A. 

evolution of thought. It is eternal, not 
as an aggregate, but as a whole. 

i. T|p.e'pa.s . . viavTovs] There is a 
slight anacoluthon, TT^V y^vftriv avrwif 
being substituted for the original object. 

i. OVK OVTO.S irplv oupavdv -yevo-0ai j 
That is to say, time and its divisions are 
not logically conceivable without the 
existence of a world of phenomena : if 
there is to be succession, there must be 
things to succeed each other. But as 
there is no beginning of the /ciff/tos in 
time, there is no beginning of time itself. 
Aristotle, with his usual confusion be- 
tween metaphor and substance, accuses 
Plato of generating time in time : physica 
VIII i 25 i b 17 H\drwv 5' avrbv yevvq. 
/u.6^05. In Plato's narrative no other 
mode of expressing it would be ad- 
missible. Proklos well says xpdvos y&p 
jier' ovpavov ytyovtv, ov XP^ VOV fd>ptoi>, 
d\\' 6 irai xpovos, wore tv rip cnrcipu 
Xpov<f> yivtrat 6 otpavbs KO.I 
fffriv e</>' ficdrfpa Ka.06.irtp b 

4. ^ryovora t8i]] i.e. forms or modes 
of time, and therefore belonging to 

6. TQ Si TO ?<TTI] This passage 
leaves no doubt about the perfect clear- 
ness of Plato's conception of eternity 
as distinguished from time. Eternity is 
quite another thing from everlasting du- 
ration : it is that which /ue'ifei lv M, it 
is apart from time and has nothing to do 
with succession. Time has been and 
shall be for everlasting,' but the infinity 
of its duration has nothing in common 
with eternity, for it is a succession.. Plato, 
as he was certainly the first to form a 
real conception of immateriality, was 
probably the first who firmly grasped 
the notion of eternity. Parmenides in- 
deed uses similar language, verse 64 
(Karsten), otfiror' tijv otiS' fffrai, tirei vvv 
tffTiv 6/jLov irSa> | b> fwexe's. But the 
materiality attaching to his conception 
of tv renders it very doubtful whether 
he actually realised the full meaning of 

38 B] TIMAIO2. 121 

named time. For whereas days and nights and months and 
years were not before the universe was created, he then devised 
the generation of them along with the fashioning of the universe. 
Now all these are portions of time, and was and shall be are 
forms of time that have come to be, although we wrongly 
ascribe them unawares to the eternal essence. For we say that 
it was and is and shall be, but in verity is alone belongs to it : 
and was and shall be it is meet should be applied only to 
Becoming which moves in time ; for these are motions. But 
that which is ever changeless without motion must not become 
elder or younger in time, neither must it have become so in the 
past nor be so in the future ; nor has it to do with any attributes 
that Becoming attaches to the moving objects of sense : these 
have come into being as forms of time, which is the image of 
eternity and revolves according to number. Moreover we say 
that the become is the become, and the becoming is the be- 
coming, and that which shall become is that which shall become, 
and not-being is not-being. In all this we speak incorrectly. 
But concerning these things the present were perchance not the 
right season to inquire particularly. 

this. It may even be doubted whether can say it is. Compare Plutarch de eJ 

Aristotle, though Plato had preceded apud Delphos 19. Again to say JJLTJ uv 

him, held an equally clear view: see for is /m? ov is absurd and contradictory, 

instance de caelo I ix 279* 23 foil. With It might be rejoined that Plato has 

the present passage may be compared himself proved that /XT) ov does in a 

the minute discussion in Parmenides certain sense exist: Sophist 259 A ftm 

140 E 142 A. ffa^ffTara, & dvayKys elvai TO /*i) ov, 

8. KiVTi<ris "y^P &TOV] i.e. they im- And in Parmenides 162 A he shows that 

ply succession. Set O.VTO oevubv ^x e '" r v A"? e "' a ' T0 e '" at 

13. KttT dpi9p.6v KVK\ov(ivov] i.e. ful- A"7 ov, el /ilXXct /IT) eJwu. In the Sophist 
filling regular periodic cycles, such as however Plato, by elucidating the true 
years months and days. nature of /ii) ov, is controverting the 

14. irpos TOVTOIS ?TI rd roidBc] sc. logical and metaphysical errors which 
OVK 6p6us \tyo/j.ev. arose from assuming that /XT) ov was an 

TO yeyovos Ivoi Y - Y OV S 1 O ne m " absolute contradictory of ov, and from 

accuracy of which we are guilty is ignoring the copulative force of iffrt. 

to apply the terms yv and &mu to Here he is complaining of that very use 

eternity : a second is to apply tori to of tffriv as a copula : it is wrong, he says, 

phenomena- and to non-existence. To that the word should have been employed 

say that yeyovbs is yeyovos is incorrect; for that purpose: it is the inaccuracy 

for even as we say 'is', it has changed of human thought represented in lan- 

from what it was : it is ever moving and guage. 
we can find no stable point where we 38 B 39 E, c. xi. So time is created 



[ 3 8 B- 

XI. Xpoi/o? 6 ovv /iter' ovpavov yeyovev, ti-a a pa 
'd/J.a Kal \vdwffiv, av TTOTC \v<ri<i Tt? avrwv yLyvrjrai, Kal Kara 
TO TrapdBetyfjia 7779 &OMyuB9 <t/o-eo)9, tV <9 ouoioraTos avru> 
Kara Svvauiv 77' TO // 70/3 8>) 7rapd8eijfJ.a irdvra alwvd e&riv C 

5 oV, o 8' av Bid reXovs TOI> diravra %p6vov yeyovu><? re /cat aw Kal 
ecrouevo?. e ovv \6jov Kal Biavoias 6eov roiavrr}^ Trpo? ^povov 
lyeveo-iv, [jiva yevvrjGrj ^povos^ 77X40? Kal o~e\t r )vr) Kal rrevre a\\a 
aarpa, eTTiKXrjv e%ovra TrXavrjrd, ets Siopicruov Kal <j)v\aKi)v 
dpiOuwv xpovov yeyove. awuara 8e avrwv eKacrraiv Troiija-as o 

10 deos 07)Kev ei? ra9 7Tpi<f)opd<t, a? ?; Qarepov Tre/JtoSo? ^'ety, eTrra 
ovo~a<? oi>Ta eTrra, <re\r)vr)v fiev et? roy Trepl 717^ jrpdorov, rj\.iov 8' D 
et9 TOV Bevrepov virep 7779, ewafyopov Be Kal TOV iepbv 'Ep/zoO 
\ejouevov et9 roi)9 Ta^et /^ey io-6Spouov 77X40) KVK\OV icvras, 

vo yevvyOfi xp&o* inclusi. 
13 TOIS : roV AHZ. 

3 Staiwvias : aluvlas S. 7 

8 TrXai^ro: TrXaviyTcu S. 

along with the material universe and co- 
eval therewithal, to complete its simili- 
tude to the eternal type. And for the 
measuring of time God made the sun 
and the moon and five other planets ; 
and he set them in the seven orbits into 
which the circle of the Other was sun- 
dered, and gave each of them its fitting 
period: and being instinct with living 
soul every planet learnt and understood 
its appointed task. And those that re- 
volved in smaller orbits fulfilled their 
revolutions more speedily than those which 
moved in larger. And whereas their 
orbits were inclined at an angle to the 
direction wherein the universe moves, 
the motion of the Same in its diurnal 
round converted all their circles into 
spirals : and since their motion was op- 
posed to the rotation of the universe, 
whereby they were carried round, the 
slower, as making less way against this 
rotation, seemed more swift than the 
swifter and to overtake those by which 
they were in truth overtaken. And God 
kindled a light, even the sun, in the 
second orbit, that it should shine to the 
ends of the universe, and men might 
learn number from the heavenly periods. 

For night and day are measured by the 
revolution of the universe, and months 
and years by the moon and the sun ; and 
all the other planets give measures of 
time, diverse and manifold, though they 
are not accounted such by the multitude : 
and the perfect year is fulfilled when all 
the revolutions come round at the same 
time to the same point. For these causes 
were the heavenly bodies created. 

i. |T' ovpavov yY OVV ] '^ as come 
into being in our story ', as the tense de- 
notes. Time and the material universe 
are of necessity strictly coeval, since each 
implies the other nor can exist apart 
from it. 

i. S.v TTOT X.WTIS] Proklos has some 
sensible remarks on this passage, saying 
<ra0ws a.yivi>T)Tov KO.! d<f>9aprov delKWffi 
TOV ovpavbv. el yap ytyovtv, ev \pov^ 
yiyovev. el d& yuera xpbvov yeyovev, OVK 
ev XP V V yfyovev ovde yftp o xp VO! ev 
XpovQ yeyovev, Iva. (tr) irpo XP VOV XP VO! 
jf. el apa yuera xpovov ytyovev, ov yeyove. 
Sei yap trav TO yiyv6fj.evov [jxTayeveffTepov 
tlvai xpofov 6 5' ovpavos ovdafj.js effTt 
Xpovov fj.eTa.yeveaT(pos...5fj.oiov oftv J>s et 
elvat ^ov\o/j,evo3 TO.S OaTepov 

vfpi<l>opM eTTTadaXtyot ffvvvTrdpxeut aura?*, 



XI. Time then has come into being along with the universe, 
that being generated together, together they may be dissolved, 
should a dissolution of them ever come to pass ; and it was 
made after the pattern of the eternal nature, that it might be as 
like to it as was possible. For the pattern is existent for all 
eternity ; but the copy has been and is and shall be throughout 
all time continually. So then this was the plan and intent of 
God for the generation of time ; the sun and the moon and five 
other stars which have the name of planets have been created 
for defining and preserving the numbers of time. And when 
God had made their several bodies, he set them in the orbits 
wherein the revolution of the Other was moving, in seven circles 
seven stars. The moon he placed in that nearest the earth, and 
in the second above the earth he set the sun ; and the morning- 
star and that which is held sacred to Hermes he assigned to 
those that moved in an orbit having equal speed with the sun, 

'iva. ta,v Trore >} cirra* apria ylyvijTai, Kal 
avTai apTiai yiyvuvTai, a"r)/J.aii'ui> yui) juera- 
ireffLffda.L TO.S TrepHpopas lirl TO apriov, OVTW 
877 Kal vvv -qyeiffOai vofJ.iffT^ov irepl TT)J 
aXucnas T^S rou /cocrjuou re Kal TOV xpovov. 

5. 6 8' afl] Lindau understands 
Xpofos : but this produces tautology ; 
evidently ovpavos is to be supplied. 

7. [Hva -yevvrjOTJ XP VOS ] Although 
these words are in all mss. and in Pro- 
klos, they appear to me so unmistakably 
a mere gloss on wpoj XP OVOV y^vecnv that 
I have bracketed them. They are not 
represented in Cicero's translation. 

8. irK\Tiv ?x VTa ir\avt]Ta] I have 
retained the reading of A, though Stall- 
baum's irXavrjrai is perfectly good gram- 
mar; emK\r)v ^x ot>Ta being equivalent to 
eTTiKaXov/jLtva: compare Symposium 205 D 
TO TOV ti\ov 6vofJ.a tffx ovffl - v > fywrd rt Kal 
epav Kal ipaaTai. In Laws 82 [ B Plato 
condemns the term TrXa^T/rd, on the score 
of irreverence, as implying that these 
bodies wandered at random without law. 

10. els TO.S Trepi4>opas| sc. the zodiac. 

1 1. rjXiov 8' ls TOV Stvrtpov] This 
was the usual arrangement in Plato's time 
and down to Eudoxos and Aristotle: later 

astronomers placed the sun in the fourth 
or middle circle, above Venus and Mer- 

12. i<>><r<J>6pov] i.e. Venus. Plato was 
aware of the identity of eufffopos and 
&T7re/>os. It is somewhat strange that he 
gives none of the planets their usual ap- 
pellations except Mercury; for these names 
must have been current in his day : they 
are all given in Epinomis 987 B, c. 
Other Greek names were for Saturn <pal- 
i>ut>, for Jupiter QatOuv, for Mars irvpoeis, 
for Mercury ffriXfiuv, while Venus was 
<f>w(T<f>opos, eo>(T<o/>os, or &T7re/>os : see 
Cicero di? natura deorum n 52, 53; 
pseudo-Aristotle de mundo 392* 23. 

13. els TOVS ra\u jUv l<r<58po|iov] I 
have with Stallbaum adopted royy. The 
reading TOV, which has best authority, 
can nevertheless hardly be right, since it 
would imply that Venus and Mercury had 
one and the same orbit. It may be ob- 
jected that, if Ki//cXous is to be supplied, 
we have an awkward tautology in KvxXovt 
KVK\OI> t'oWas. But may we not under- 
stand irXac^ras? As to the equality of 
the periods assigned to the Sun, Venus, 
and Mercury, compare Republic 617 B 



[ 3 8 D- 

TTJV 8' evavriav elXij^ora^ avrra Suvapiv oOev Kara\ap,j3dvov<rL re 
teal KaTa\a/j,/3dvovrai Kara ravrd inr* d\\ij\ci)v r;\to9 re Kal o 
rov 'Ep/ioG Kal (0(T(f)6po<?. ra 8" a\\a ol &rj teal Si a9 ama? 
i8pv<raTo, i T4<? 7T^toi 7ra<7a9, 6 \6yos Trdpepyos wv 7r\ov av 
epyov <uv eveica \eyerai irapdcr^oi. ravra fiev ovv I'tra)? ra^;' av 
Kara <r%o\r)v v&repov rtjs a^ta? rvoi 8itia'e(o<;. CTreiBr B ovv 

re Kal afj.a dXX^Xoij TOV re ?/3- 
5ofMV Kal ZKTOV and V^/JLTTTOV. The author 
of the Epinomis, though in rather indefi- 
nite language, gives the same account, 
986 E i) rerdpTri 8t <f>opa. Kal St^|o5os a/j.a 
Kal ir^wrtj rdxft. TjXt^ <rxf56' tcr-ri, Kal 
ovre ppaSvrtpa ovre ffarruv : cf. 990 B. 
Probably, as Martin suggests, Plato was 
led to this hypothesis by the observation 
that at the end of the sun's annual revo- 
lution the two planets are in close prox- 
imity to him. 




I. TI^V 8' ^vavrCav clXrjxoTas avru 
Svvap.iv] These words are usually under- 
stood to mean that Venus and Mercury 
revolve in a direction contrary to that of 
the sun. This view I believe to be un- 
tenable. Aristotle indeed says, metaph. 
A xii IOI9 3 15, \tyerai i) apxi} 
Ku/ijcrewy ^ /uera/JoXi/s 17 tv trtpy rj y Zrepov. 
But still Svvafjus tvavrla. cannot amount 
in itself to contrary motion, only to a 
contrary tendency, whatever that may be. 
Moreover the facts which fell under 





Plato's observation do not in the slightest 
degree lend themselves to such a hypo- 
thesis. Martin gives the following state- 
ment of the facts which it is supposed 
the contrary motion is intended to ex- 
plain. After the conjunction of either 
Venus or Mercury with the sun at perigee, 
for some time the planet gains upon the 
sun ; then for several days it is nearly 

stationary in relation to him ; after which 
it begins to lose ground, comes into con- 
junction with the sun at apogee, continues 
for some time longer to lose ground, and 
then again appears stationary : once more 
it begins to gain on the sun, comes into 
conjunction at perigee, and so forth ad 

Now, as Martin observes, the theory of 



but having a contrary tendency : wherefore the sun and Hermes 
and the morning star in like manner overtake and are over- 
taken one by another. And as to the rest, were we to set forth 
all the orbits wherein he put them and the causes wherefore he 
did so, the account, though only by the way, would lay on us a 
heavier task than that which was our chief object in giving it. 
These things perhaps may hereafter, when we have leisure, find 
a fitting exposition. 

contrary motion is flagrantly inadequate 
to account for these facts; for since the 
motion of the planets will thus be ap- 
proximately in the same direction as the 
motion of the Same, they would regularly 
and rapidly gain upon the sun. The truth 
is, as I believe, that Plato meant the sun 
to share the contrary motion of Venus 
and Mercury in relation to the other four 
planets. It is quite natural, seeing that 
the sun and the orbits of Venus and Mer- 
cury are encircled by the orbit of the 
earth, while Plato supposed them all to 
revolve about the earth, that he should 
class them together apart from the four 
whose orbits really do encircle that of the 
earth : his observations would very readily 
lead him to attributing to these three a 
motion contrary to the rest; but there 
seems nothing which could possibly have 
induced him to class the sun apart from 
the two inferior planets. But if this is 
so, what is the tvavria. 8'jva.fus? What I 
believe it to be may be understood from 
the accompanying figure, which is copied 
from part of a diagram in Arago's 
Popular Astronomy. This represents the 
motion of Venus relative to the earth 
during one year, as observed in 1713. 
It will be seen that the planet pursues her 
path among the stars pretty steadily from 
January to May; after that she wavers, 
begins a retrograde movement, and then 
once more resumes her old course, thus 
forming a loop, which is traversed from 
May to August. After that she proceeds 
unfaltering on her way for the rest of the 
year. This process is repeated so that 

five such loops are formed in eight years. 
Mercury behaves in precisely the same 
way, except that his curve is very much 
more complex and the loops occur at far 
shorter intervals. Now this is just what 
I believe is the ivavria., this ten- 
dency on the part of Venus, as viewed 
from the earth, periodically to retrace her 
steps. These retrogressions of the planets 
were well known to the Greek astrono- 
mers, who invented a complex theory of 
revolving spheres to account for them. 
Probably Plato meant to put forward no 
very definite astronomical theory : for 
instance he gives no hint of the revolving 
spheres : he merely records the fact of this 
retrogressive tendency being observable. 

If the contrary motion of the two 
planets is insisted on, the result follows 
that we have here the one theory in the 
whole dialogue which is manifestly and 
flagrantly inadequate. Plato's physical 
theories, however far they may differ 
from the conclusions of modern science, 
usually offer a fair and reasonable expla- 
nation of such facts as were known to 
him: they are sometimes singularly feli- 
citous, and never absurd. I cannot then 
believe that he has here presented us 
with a hypothesis so obviously futile. 
And if he had, how did it escape the 
vigilance of Aristotle, who would have 
been ready enough to seize the occasion 
of making a telling point against Plato ? 

It is remarkable that neither in Re- 
public 617 A, nor in Epinomis 986 E (the 
author of which must have been well 
acquainted with Plato's astronomy), nor 



[ 3 8 E- 


exacrrov d<f>iKero <f>opdv ru>v o<ra eSet 
Seoyiofr re efjt,^rv^ot<; a-cafiara Be6evra 

eyevvr/Or) TO re trpocrra^OfV efiaffe, Kara Brj rrjv Barepov 
dv rr\a^lav ovarav, Bid TIJS ravrov (fropds Iovcrdv re real xpa- 39 A 
5 rovfj,evt]v y TO fJ.ev pet^ova avrwv, TO ' \drro> KVK\OV lov, Bdrrov 
fjiev rd rov e\drrw, rd Be rov //&> ftpaSi/Tepov Trepiyeiv. rfj Br} 
ravrov cpopa rd Tartar a Trepuovra vrro rwv flpaBvrepov lovrwv 
e<f>aivTO Kara\ap,ftdvovra Kara\aiijBdvecr6ai' rravra<$ <ydp TOI)? 
KVK\OV<S avrwv o-Tpe<f>ov<ra eX,t/ca, Bid TO Bt^fj Kara rd evavria 

4 lovaav : lovffys et mox KpaTOv/j.^vt]^ AHZ. 7 

pov : (3pa.5vTtp<av A. 

: T& omittit A. 

yet in the pseuclo-Timaeus Locrus, who 
has a rather minute paraphrase of the 
present passage, is there mention of a 
contrary motion as belonging to any of 
the planets. 

4. iovcrdv TC Kal KpaTovp.VT)v] This 
correction is absolutely necessary. The 
circle of the Other passes Sict T^S ravrov 
<t>opas, that is, traverses it at the angle 
which the ecliptic makes with the equator, 
and is controlled by it, that is, it is carried 
round as a whole by the rotation of the 
Same. The relative motion of the Same 
and the Other are precisely exemplified, 
if we suppose an ordinary terrestrial globe 
to be revolving on its own axis, and a 
point upon its surface traversing it along 
the circle of the ecliptic in a direction 
approximately contrary to the globe's 
rotation : thus the point, while retaining 
its own independent motion on the surface 
of the globe, shares the rotary motion of 
the whole. Lindau would justify oi5<n?i 
Ko.1 Kparovfdvqs by treating it as a genitive 
absolute referring to TTJV Oar^pov <j>opav : 
but this is hopeless. 

5. 6irrov (iiv rd TOV IXdrrtt] Thus 
the periods of revolution continuously in- 
crease from the Moon to Saturn. Bockh 
has sufficiently demonstrated that the 
words ffGLrrov and fipadurepov do not refer 
to the absolute velocity of the planets 
through space, but to the celerity with 
which they accomplish their revolutions: 

thus the moon, having the smallest orbit 
to traverse, completes it in by far the 
shortest period; although her actual ve- 
locity may be much less than that of Saturn 
who has the largest orbit and the longest 
period. Thus the Sun, Venus, and Mer- 
cury, having the same period for aTroKa- 
ra.ffTO.ois, differ in actual velocity in the 
proportion 2, 3, 4. 

6. TTJ 81) TO.VTOV <j>op<j] The difficult 
passage which follows has been very 
lucidly expounded by Bockh in his in- 
valuable essay 'Ueber das kosmische 
System des Platon ' pp. 38 48. Martin's 
note also is excellent : of Stallbaum's the 
less said the better. The two chief points 
requiring explanation are the apparent 
overtaking of the swifter planets by the 
slower, and the formation of the spirals. 
To take the former first, the sentence rrj 
S ravrov.,. KaraXafjL^dvfffScu is explained 
by the following irajras yap...dirt<}>aivtv. 

Let the circle ACBD represent the 
universe, diurnally rotating from east to 
west on its own axis, which is perpendicular 
to the plane of the equator AB. The re- 
presentation being in two dimensions, the 
straight lines A, CD must be taken to 
indicate great circles of a sphere. Thus the 
motion of the Same is in the direction AB. 
The motion of the Other, or of the planets, 
is in the direction CD. Let us suppose 
two planets to be at a given time at the 
point E. Now had these planets, which we 

39 A] 



But when each of the beings which were to join in creating 
time had arrived in its proper orbit, and had been generated as 
animate creatures, their bodies secured with living bonds, and 
had learnt their appointed task ; then in the motion of the 
Other, which was slanting and crossed the motion of the Same 
and was thereby controlled, whereas one of these planets had a 
larger, another a smaller circuit, the lesser orbit was completed 
more swiftly, the larger more slowly : but because of the motion 
of the Same those which revolved most swiftly seemed to be 
overtaken by those that went more slowly, though really they 
overtook them. For the motion of the Same, twisting all their 
circles into spirals, because they have a separate and simul- 

will call P l and P 2 , no independent motion 
of their own, but were stationary relatively 
to the universe, it is obvious that in 
twenty-four hours the revolution of the 
Same would bring them both round to 
the same point E. But suppose that P" 

travels twice as fast as P 1 (that is accom- 
plishes twice as great a fraction of its own 
orbit in the same time) : then, while during 
the day P 1 has arrived at f, P 2 has got 
as far as G. Thus, since the course of 
the planets is approximately opposite to 
the rotation of the whole, P 2 has counter- 
acted that motion to twice as great an 
extent as P 1 , and accordingly is propor- 
tionally longer in being carried back 
opposite E. Thus P 1 , departing more 
slowly from the revolution of the Same 
(f3pa.dvra.Ta. airibv O.JT ai/Trjs), arrives at 
the same region of the heavens earlier 
than P 2 , and so seems to the popular eye 
to have outstripped it. The revolution 

of the Same being immeasurably the 
swiftest, it is the motion imparted by this 
which attracts the eye from day to day ; 
and when the leeway due to the planet's 
own motion is made up, the slower planet 
appears faster because it accomplishes the 
rotation of the Same in the shorter time. 
Supposing for instance on a given day 
the moon rises as the sun sets, on the 
following day the moon will not rise for 
perhaps an hour after sunset, thus appear- 
ing to have lost an hour on the sun. 

9. <rrp<j>owa gXixa] The motion of 
the Same produces the spirals as follows. 
In the foregoing diagram we will suppose 
a planet at a given time to be at the point 
E. Now, as before said, were the planet 
itself stationary, this diurnal revolution 
would in twenty-four hours bring it round 
again to the point E; and the figure 
described by the planet would be a perfect 
circle. But, as it is, while the motion of 
the Same is whirling it round, the planet 
is travelling along its own path towards 
G. At the end of twenty-four hours then 
the planet is not at E but at G; and the 
figure it has described under the influence 
of the motion of the Same is accordingly 
not a circle but a spiral. Similarly the 
next diurnal revolution brings it back not 
to G, but to a point between G and Z>; 
so that each daily journey of the planet 
caused by the revolution of the Same is 



[39 A 

afia Trpoievai, TO flpaBvrara aTTiov dfi avrrjs 01/0-779 ra%i<rrrj<; B 
eyyvrara aTrecfraivev. 'iva o eirj fierpov evapye? n 777)09 a\.\r)\a 
ftpaBvrijri xal rd%ei, KaO' a Trepl rd$ OKTW (fropds Tropevotro, <&>9 
6 0eo9 avfj^lrev ev rrj 7T/309 yrjv Bevrepa r<av TrepioBwv, o Brj vvv 

5 KK\^KafMev rjXiov, 'iva '6 rt, yuaXtcrra els cnravra fyaivoi rov ovpa- 
vov firdo"%oi re dpiOfjiov rd &>a, 00*0*9 r]v Trpoarjicov, fiaOovra 
Trapd rf}<? ravrov Kal 6p,olov 7repi<f)0pa<t. vug JJMV ovv rjfiepa re 
yeyovev ovrax; Kal Bid ravra, 77 rrjs /ita? Kal (^povifMwrdnjf KV- C 
/c\7;creft)9 Tre/jtoSo?' pels Be eiretBdv o-e\rjm) 7repie\0ovcra TOV 

10 eavrfj? KVK\OV rfkiov eVt/caraXa/ST;, eVtauro? Be OTrorav 7/Xto? 
rov eavrov TrepieXdrj KVK\OV. rwv 8' d\\a)v ra9 TrepioBovs OVK 
evvevorjKores dvOpwrroi, 7r\r)v 0X170* rwv 7ro\\wv, ovre 6vo/j,d- 
%ovo~iv ovre Trpo? aXX^Xa i;vfjbfj,rpovvrai cncoTrovvres 
ware tw? eVo? elTreiv OVK 'icrao-i j^povov ovra ra9 rovrcov 

15 TrXr/Oei fiev d/jirj^avw ^pwpAva^, Tre7roiKi\fjiva<j Be ffav/Maa-rws* D 

ecrri, 8' o/ia><? ovBev tjrrov Karavoijo-ai Bvvarov, &5? o 76 reXeo<? 

xpbvov rov re\eov eviavrov 77X77/301 Tore, orav 

3 Ko.6' d scripsi. Kal TO. ASZ. a-j ra H. 

a spiral. This of course in no wise affects 
its own proper movement along the circle 
of the Other. 

It is necessary to bear clearly in mind 
that the apparent overtaking of the swifter 
by the slower planets has nothing to do 
with the spirals. The spirals are due 
solely to the obliquity of the ecliptic. 
But if there were no such obliquity, if the 
motion of the Other were directly opposed 
to that of the Same, the illusion concern- 
ing the swifter and slower planets would 
be unaltered. In that case P l and F 2 , 
instead of travelling to /' and G, would 
travel to points on EA equidistant with F 
and G from E. In this case no spirals 
would arise; the planets would all in 
good time get back to E ; but P l would 
equally appear to have outstripped I* 2 . 

A few words must be said concerning 
the construction, which is not quite free 
from obscurity. I agree with Bockh in 
joining Sia. rb $ixrj...irpo'tfva.i with the pre- 
ceding clause, but not in taking iravTat 
TOI)J KfoXoi't as the subject ; for then it is 

hardly possible to give a suitable sense to 
Six?;. But if we regard rrjv Bartpov <f>opai> 
and TTJV TO.VTOV jointly as the subject of 
irpoievai we are enabled to do so. The 
spirals are formed because the circles 
move 3xi?, that is, separately, asunder: 
i.e. they are not two contrary motions in 
the same circle, but two approximately 
contrary motions in two separate inter- 
secting circles, icari Tavavrla does not 
constitute any part of the cause why the 
spirals are formed ; they would arise 
equally were the motion of the Other 
from D to C; but Plato is in fact con- 
densing into this one clause a statement 
of how the spirals are formed and how 
the slower planets seem to overtake the 
swifter: the first is given by Sixy, the 
second by /card rdvavrla. The difficulty 
of the passage mainly arises from this ex- 
treme brevity. 

3. K<x0* a] I have ventured upon this 
correction of the ms. reading Kal ra, which 
certainly cannot stand, involving as it 
does the absurd conception that the hea- 

D] TIMAIOS. 129 

taneous motion in the opposite way, being of all the swiftest 
displays closest to itself that which departs most slowly from 
it. And that there might be some clear measure of the relative 
swiftness and slowness with which they moved in their eight 
revolutions, God kindled a light in the second orbit from the 
earth, which we now have named the sun, in order that it might 
shine most brightly to the ends of heaven, and that living 
things, so many as was meet, should possess number, learning it 
from the motion of the same and uniform. Night then and day 
have been created in this manner and for these causes ; and 
this is one revolution of the undivided and most intelligent 
circuit ; and a month is fulfilled when the moon, after com- 
pleting her own orbit, overtakes the sun ; a year, when the sun 
has completed his own course. But the courses of the others 
men have not taken into account, save a few out of many ; and 
they neither give them names nor measure them against one 
another, comparing them by means of numbers nay I may 
say they do not know that time arises from the wanderings of 
these, which are incalculable in multitude and marvellously 
intricate. None the less however can we observe that the 
perfect number of time fulfils the perfect year at the moment 

venly bodies could not see their way until cerning time: they do not reflect that the 

their orbits were illumined by the Sun. revolutions of the other celestial bodies 

6. [iaOovra irapd TTJS ravrov] Day equally afford measurements of time, 
and night are caused by the diurnal rota- 1 7. r6v rtXeov eviavrov] The perfect 

tion of the universe, which is the motion year is when all the planets return to one 

of the Same, round the earth : and these, and the same region of the heavens at 

being smaller than any other divisions of the same time. See Stobaeus eel. I 264. 

time produced by the celestial bodies, are <rxi? Ke^aX^, 'attain their starting-point'; 

taken as the unit of measurement. Hence as Stobaeus /./. puts it, 6rav tirl TOI>J dfi 

man derived the conception of number: <Sv ^p^avro rrjs Kiv/i<reus d<piKvwi>Tai rdirovs. 

compare 47 A, and Epinomis 978 c foil. Alkinoos also says that the perfect number 

8. 11 TI)S ("as] The circle of the Same, is complete when all the planets arrive in 

it will be remembered, was left aa-^arm. the same sign of the zodiac and are so situate 

The Trepi'oSos is here put for the time con- that a radius drawn from the earth to the 

sumed in completing the ireptodos, the sphere of the fixed stars passes through the 

wxO-/inepov, as Proklos calls it. centres of all. The phrase ffxv Kf<f>a\rjv 

10. tjXiov liriKaToXdpt)] i.e. thesyn- seems like a technical term of astronomy, 

odic month of ig\ days ; the sidereal but I have found no other example of it, 

month, or period in which the moon com- though Stobaeus speaks of a Ke<pa\)\ 

pletes her own circuit, being about 27$. Kpbvov. As to the duration of the fdyat 

14. OVK llo-aori \p6vov ovra] Plato tviavrbs there is no agreement among the 

means that men have not generalised con- ancients. Tacitus dial, de orat. 16 gives 

P. T. Q 



[39 n 

Tft3i/ OKTW TrepioBwv rd rrpos a\\rj\a ^v^rrepavOevra rd^rj 

K<f>a\T)V TW rOV TdVTOV KOI 6/iOlOK tOI/TO9 dva/J,Tpr)6eVTa KVK\tt>. 

Kara ravra Brj /cal rovrcav eveKa e<yevvrj0r) rwv ao-rpwv oo~a Bt 
ovpavov TTopevo/jieva ff^e rpOTrds, "va ro8' (<? ofioiorarov r) TO> E 

5 r\G> Kal VOIjrto %(>(> 7T/JO? Tr/V TrjS Stat&Wa? fjUfJUffft^ $U(7e&>9. 

XII. Kal ra fJLev a\\a 1781; pexpt ^povov yevecreow djreip- 
yao~ro et9 o^oLorrjra <atrep aTreiKa^ero, TW Be (j,i]7ra> TO frdvra 
o>a evTo? ar^ToO <yjvr)fjieva TrepieiXiy^evai, ravrrj eri et^ey avo- 
/io/ft)?. TOUTO 817 TO ^aTaXotTroi/ aTreipyd^ero avrov Trpo? TI)Z/ 

10 TOI) 7rapa8et7/Aaro5 ajrorvTrov pevos <f>vcnv. yirep ovv vow evoixras 
tSea? TO) o ecrrt %(ov, olaL re eveicrt, /cat ocrat, icaOopa, roiavras 
Kal rocravras Sievorjdtj Selv Kal r68e cr^lv. el<rl Srj rerrapes, 
fiia fjuev ovpdviov Oewv yevos, a\\r) 8e irrr^vov Kal deporropov, 40 A 
rpLrt] Se evvbpov elSo?, Tre^oz/ 8e /cat %paaiov reraprov. rov 

15 oyy deiov rr)v rfXeicrrrfv ISeav K rcvpos aTreipya^ro, 07T<W9 o 
\a//.7r porarov ISeiv re KaXXicrrov eirj, rm Be rravrl 
VKVK\OV eVotet, rtflffft re 6t9 rrjv rov Kpario-rov 
^vveTTOfjievov, vei/Jias rcepl Trdvra KVK\O> rov ovpavov, 
d\ijdivov avra> rcerroiKL^^evov eti/at /ca^' o\ov. Kiv^(ret<; Be Svo 

12 5^ : 5^ S. 

3 iyevv/iOrj : yfi>-/iOr) A. 

g dureipydfero : air^p^aro AZ. 

it on the authority of Cicero at 12954 
years; but Cicero himself, de natura 
deorum II 52, expresses no opinion. 

1. rd irpis tfXXrjXa vjiirpav06Ta 
rdxi] i-e. when their several periods are 
accomplished simultaneously: raxy of 
course refers to the period of aTroKOTei- 
O-TCKHS, not to the actual velocity. 

2. T<p ravTov] Because the periods 
are measured by the number of days and 
nights they contain. 

39 E 40 D, c. xii. Next God created 
four kinds of living creatures in the uni- 
verse, so many forms as he saw there 
were in the type. One, the race of the 
heavenly gods, he fashioned for the most 
part of fire ; the second soared in the air ; 
the third dwelt in the waters ; and the 
fourth went upon dry land. The gods, 
who are the stars of heaven, he placed in 
the sphere of the Same to follow its revo- 
lution, so many of them as are fixed stars ; 

and he gave them two motions, one a 
uniform rotation on their own axis, the 
other a forward revolution about the cen- 
tre of the universe; but in the other five 
motions they had no part. The planets 
he set, as aforesaid, in the sphere of the 
Other. But the earth he made motionless 
at the centre, fast about the axis of the 
universe, to be the measure of day and 
night, first and most august of divine 
beings. Now all the motions of these 
stars and their crossings and conjunctions 
and occultations it were vain to describe 
without an orrery : let this account of 
them then suffice. 

n. roiavras Kal rooravras] The in- 
fluence of oM re Kal foai preceding has 
caused these words to be substituted for 
rafrrri, which would regularly correspond 
to $ire/>. 

13. ovpaviov 0v y^vos] i.e. the stars 
and planets. The 7^17 are four in number 

40 A] TIMAIOS. 131 

when the relative swiftnesses of all the eight revolutions ac- 
complish their course together and reach their starting-point, 
being measured by-the circle of the same and uniformly moving. 
In this way then and for these causes were created all such of 
the stars as wander through the heavens and turn about therein, 
in order that this universe may be most like to the perfect and 
ideal animal by its assimilation to the eternal being. 

XII. Now up to the generation of time all else had been 
accomplished in the likeness of that whereunto it was likened : 
but in that it did not yet contain all living creatures created 
within it, herein it was still unlike. So he went on to complete 
this that remained unfinished, moulding it after the nature of the 
pattern. So many forms then as Mind perceived to exist in the 
ideal animal, according to their variety and multitude, such 
kinds and such a number did he think fit that this universe 
should possess. These are fourfold : first the race of the 
heavenly gods, next the winged tribe whose path is in the air, 
third whatso dwells in the water, and fourth that which goes 
upon dry land. The visible form of the deities he created 
chiefly of fire, that it might be most radiant and most fair to 
behold ; and likening it to the All he shaped it like a sphere 
and assigned it to the intelligence of the supreme to follow after 
it ; and he disposed it throughout all the firmament of heaven, 
to be an adornment of it in very truth, wrought cunningly over 
the whole expanse. And he bestowed two movements upon 

to correspond with the four elements. It is preferable to airi?ipa.To an entirely in- 
to be observed that only in the first class appropriate word. I cannot think that 
does the correspondence depend upon the the authority of A ought to prevail to the 
structure : the remaining three are classed exclusion of sense, 
according to their place of abode. 17. els-r^v TOV Kparfrrrov 4>p6vT]<riv] A 

1 5. rt\v irXt<rrnv l&av] cf. Epinomis very bold substitute for ets T^V rov Kpariffrov 

981 D rb yap TrXeiffrov wvpfa <?x e > ^X et /*V irepi(f>opa.v <j>povin<i3Ta.Tr]v otiffav. T& Kpd- 

777$ re Kol ci^pos, %" ^ Ka ' a-irovTuv T&V TKTTOV evidently signifies the Same, cf. 

&\\wv /3/>ax&* /J-tpfi- The reason for the 36 c ; and the phrase means that the fixed 

qualification is doubtless that were they stars, situate in the outermost sphere, 

constituted solely of fire, they would be follow the diurnal rotation of the universe, 

opara, but not airrd : some admixture of but do not change their positions relative 

earth was necessary to give them the to it. 

second distinctive property of bodily ex- 18. Koo-fxov dXijOivov] The play on the 

istence; cf. 31 B. word K<So>ios is obvious, though hardly 

dircipYO^CTo] This reading, which is capable of being retained in translation, 
that of all mss. except A, seems certainly 




[40 A 

e/m<rr&>, rrjv pev ev ravrw Kara ravrn -rrep rwv avrwv 
del rd avrd eavrw Siavoovftevq), TT)V 8e et? TO TrpoaQev viro rrj<> B 
ravrov ical O/AOIOV 7repi<f>opd<; Kparovfievy rds Be Trevre Kivq<reis 
dtcivrjrov fcal eo"ro<?, iv '6 TI /j,d\i(rra avra>i> tca<rrov yevotro &5<? 
5 api<rrov. e ^? 8>) r^9 atria? yeyovev oer' a7r\avrj rwv dcrrpwv 
&>a 6ela ovra teal di&ia teal Kara ravrd ev ravr<a arpe(j)6fjLeva 
del fjLevet" rd &e rpeTropeva /cat ir\dinf]v roiavrrjv i(r%ovra, tca- 
daTrep ev rot? irpocrOev epprfdrj, tear e/ceiva yeyove. >yrjv 8e rpo(f)ov 
p,ev q/jLerepav, el\\op>evr]v Se Trepl rov Sid Travrcs TTO\OV rera- 

3 Kparovfj^v<f : Kparovfitvuv A. 9 rty ante irtpl habet A. 

1. T^V |xiv 4v ravrw] No more is 
meant than that rotation upon an axis, 
being of all motions the most uniform, is 
the best symbol of the unerring uniformity 
pertaining to the activity of pure reason. 
The stars then, being the highest of finite 
intelligences, naturally have this motion. 
A curious instance of false conclusion from 
a true premiss is to be found in Aristotle 
de caelo II viii spo 3 25, where the rota- 
tion of the heavenly bodies is denied on 
the ground that the same side of the moon 
is always turned towards us. 

2. virA Tijs TavTOv] i.e. the motion 
efc T& irpbffOev is not an advance in a 
straight line, but by the revolution of the 
Same is formed into a circular orbit. 

7. rpeirofJitva] sc. rpOTrds tx o>rra i as 
above, 39 D. 

8. 4v TOIS irporflv] 38 c foil.: /car 
(Kfiva is merely antecedent to Ka.6d.irep. 

9. ei\X.o|j.e'vT|v 8i irtpl rov 8wi iravros 
iroXov] For an exhaustive and very master- 
ly examination of this passage see Bockh's 
essay ' Ueber das kosmische System des 
Platon'. Bockh has proved beyond all 
controversy that Plato does not here 
affirm the rotation of the earth upon her 
axis. Grote has indeed attempted to 
reply to his arguments, but only to meet 
with a crushing refutation: see Bockh's 
'Kleine Schriften' vol. in p. 294 foil. 
It is indeed evident from one consideration 
alone that Plato cannot have intended 
the earth to move. The universe, he says, 

revolves diurnally on its axis, and thus, 
by carrying the sun round with its revo- 
lution, causes the alternation of day and 
night on any given region of the earth 
once in 24 hours. Now if the earth had 
an independent revolution of her own, 
whether in the same or in a contrary 
direction, it is self-evident that this whole 
arrangement would be overthrown : if the 
theory is to account for the phenomena, 
the earth must be absolutely motionless. 

The word ei'AXe<r0cu, eiXftffOai, or t\- 
\eff0ai, though it does not necessarily 
exclude the idea of motion, in itself in no 
wise implies it. Its signification is forcible 
compression or conglobation : the earth 
is packed or balled round the centre. 
Cicero's translation is 'quae traiecto axe 
sustinetur'. Various forms of the word 
are extremely common in Homer to ex- 
press the dense packing of a crowd of 
men: e.g. Iliad VIII 215. In passages 
where the meaning is extended to include 
motion, such as Sophokles Antigone 340 
i\\o/j.tvwi> dpbrpuv ?ros els ITOS, the real 
force of the word lies, not in the motion, 
but in the confinement of the motion 
within certain restricted limits, as is justly 
pointed out by Prof. Campbell, who says 
' the force of l\\etv is "limited motion"'. 

It is indeed safe to affirm that no con- 
troversy would ever have arisen on the 
subject, but for a passage in Aristotle, de 
caelo II xiii 293 b 30. In the Berlin text 
this reads as follows : frtot 5 Ka.1 Kfifttvijv 



each, one in the same spot and uniform, whereby it should be 
ever constant to its own thoughts concerning the same thing; 
the other forward, but controlled by the revolution of the same 
and uniform : but for the other five movements he made it 
motionless and still, that each star might attain the highest 
completeness of perfection. From which cause have been 
created all the stars that wander not but abide fast for ever, 
living beings divine and eternal and in one spot revolving : 
while those that move in a circle and wander as aforesaid have 
come into being on those principles which in the foregoing we 
have declared. 

And the earth our foster-mother, that is globed round the 
axis stretched from pole to pole of the universe, her he fashioned 

296 a 26 ol 5' eirl TOV peffov QevTes ?XXe<r0cu 
Kal Kivelffdal (pavi : where the added 
words distinguish the theory there stated 
from Plato's. 

One argument of Grote's may briefly 
be noticed. The inconsistency, he says, 
between the rotation of the earth on her 
axis and the diurnal rotation of the uni- 
verse escaped Aristotle (since he does not 
advert to it), why then should it not have 
escaped Plato? But Aristotle is not 
criticising the cosmogony of the Timaeus, 
but discussing the mobility of the earth ; 
therefore he is not concerned to notice 
such an inconsistency : moreover Grote is 
herein guilty of petitio principii respecting 
Aristotle's text. But it is really super- 
erogatory to expose the weakness of a 
hypothesis which has reduced so able a 
reasoner as Grote, in his eagerness to con- 
vict Plato of an irrationality, to insist on 
importing the fir/ra/cTos from the mythical 
imagery of Republic x into the serious 
cosmology of the Timaeus, to serve as 
a solid axis of the universe. Plato was 
never guilty of such an absurdity as to 
conceive the axis as other than a mathe- 
matical line. If we are to find a place in 
the Timaeus for the aTpaKTos, why not 
also for the o-<j>6v5v\oi, for the knees of 
Necessity, in short for the whole appara- 
tus of the myth ? 

M TOV KevTpov (pa.<rlv avTyv t\\e<rdai irepl 
TOV dta TTUVTOS reTa.fJ.lvov TTO\OV, uffwep ev 
T Tt/ucuy yeypaiTTai. This (except that 
for t\\eo-0ai they give ei\ei<r6a.i) is the 
reading of two mss. ; three others add Kal'tffOcu. Thus there arise three a/iroplai : 
(i) are the words Kal KiveiarOcu, which 
Simplicius had in his text, genuine? (i) 
has Aristotle misstated Plato's view? (3) 
if we admit Kal Kiveladai, can the passage 
be so understood as to harmonise with 
Plato's statement ? Bockh, adopting the 
third hypothesis, interprets Aristotle thus : 
<f>a.(rlv avTrjv "(\\ea0ai" Kal KivetaOai "irepl 
TOV Sid. iravTdi irb\ov". That 
is, he supposes Aristotle to be stating, not 
Plato's view, but that of some who con- 
ceived the earth to rotate, quoting the 
words of the Timaeus, but adding Kal 
KtvelffOat to adapt them to his present 
purpose. This however is perhaps too 
ingenious. As for the second alternative, 
we have seen and have yet to see that 
Aristotle has repeatedly misrepresented 
Plato; and if he was here citing the 
Timaeus from memory, it is impossible 
to say that he may not have done so in 
the present instance. On the whole how- 
ever I am disposed to believe that the 
words Kal Kivelo-Oai were added by some 
unwise annotator, who had in his mind 
the sentence which occurs soon afterwards, 


HAATflNOS [40 c 

fievov, (f>v\aKa Kal 8r)/j,iovpybv WKros re Kal rjiiepas ef^ij^avrja-aro, c 
Trpwrijv Kal 7rpecrf3vrdr'r)V uewv ocroi euros ovpavov yeyovafft. 
yopelas 8e rovrwv avrwv Kal TrapaftoXds d\\rj\a>v, Kal <ra> 
Trepl rd<; rwv KVK\WV ?rpo9 eavrovs eiravaKVKXrio-eis Kal -rrpoo-- 
5 / y(apTjo'i<t, ev re rais ^vvd'^reo'iv orroloi rwv Oewv tear a\X?;Xoi;9 
Kal OO~OL KaravriKpv, /J,e0* ovo-rivd<$ re eiri7rpoo-0ev 
IMV re Kara %p6vov$ ovarivas e/cacrrot KaraKa\VTrrov- 
rai Kal 7rd\iv dva<j>aiv6p,evoi ^>o/3oi9 Kal cn]^ela rwv /iera ravra D 
yevTjo'oijievwv Tot9 ov SwafAevois \o i yi^eo~uai rrepsrrovo'i, TO \e<yeii> 

3 ra addidi. g oil Swafj-tvoit : oil omittunt SZ. 

It may be asked, must not the earth, 
having a soul, possess motion, seeing that 
all the other heavenly bodies move be- 
cause they are t/ji^vxoi ? To this Martin 
acutely replies that, had she not a soul of 
her own, she must rotate on her own axis 
(which is part of the axis of the universe), 
following the rotation of the whole. But 
her vital force enables her to resist this 
rotation, and by remaining fixed to mea- 
sure day and night: her rest in fact is 
equivalent to a motion countervailing the 
motion of the whole. 

1. ejuiXaKo. Kal 8i](Aiovp'yov] Earth is 
the 'guardian' of day and night inas- 
much as without her they could not 
be measured; the 'creatress', because it 
is her shadow which causes night to be 
distinct from day. Proklos says juaXXop 
firjv 6 /JL^V ijXios T]/j^pa.s, y Si VVKT!)S alria. 
But day, regarded as the light portion 
of the vvx6"nv-epov, cannot exist unless 
night exists wherewith to contrast it; 
therefore in that sense earth is its drj/jnovp- 
76$: without her there would be light, 
but not day. Martin puts it thus : ' [elle] 
est ainsi la productrice du jour par sa 
resistance au mouvement, en meme temps 
qu'elle en est la gardienne par son im- 
mobilit^ '. 

2. o<roi VTOS ovpavov] i.e. she is in- 
ferior only to the ovpavbs as a whole. 

3. xP ^ a s] This is an astronomical 
term signifying the revolution of the 
planets around a common centre, as it 

were in a round dance: see Epinomis 
982 E iropetav 5 

OVTOL. irapaftoXri is explained by Proklos 
to denote the position of two planets in 
the same longitude, though different lati- 
tude, or their rising or setting simul- 
taneously : Trapo/SoXds d ras /card /iTjjcoj 
avrCiv (rw'Ta^eij, 8rav Kara TrXdros dia<f>- 
puffiv, rj Kara jidOos, ras ffwavarohas \tyu 
Kal ffvyKaTaSvfffis. 

Kal < rd > irepl rds] The vulgate 
Kal irepl Tas cannot be right, nor is the 
conjecture of Stephanus, ireptrrdj, much 
more satisfactory than Stallbaum's iroi- 
KfXaj. Acting on a suggestion of the 
Engelmann translator I have inserted rd, 
which at least gives a good sense. From 
Republic 617 B rptrov 8 <f>opf Uvai, wj 
ff<f>lffi (jxniveaOai, tiravaKVKXotiiJ.evov rbv 
rtraprov we might infer that tiravaK<u- 
K\t)<Tis simply means the planet's diroKa- 
TaffTaffis : the ' return of the circle upon 
itself denoting the revolution of the irfpi- 
<popd again to a given point. If Proklos 
is to be trusted however, it means the 
retardation of one heavenly body in re- 
lation to another, as irpo<rxi!)frn< means 
the gaining by one upon another. For 
?rpo(rxwpVs it is probable that we ought 
to read Trpoxwp^crets, which is given by 
one ms. 

5. 2v T TOIS |vvcit|/(riv] This sen- 
tence is certainly complex and involved, 
but I see no sufficient reason for meddling 



to be the guardian and creator of night and day, the first and 
most august of the gods that have been created within the 
heavens. But the circlings of them and their crossings one of 
another, and the manner of the returning of their orbits upon 
themselves and their approximations, and which of the deities 
meet in their conjunctions and which are in opposition, and how 
they pass before and behind each other, and at what times they 
are hidden from us and again reappearing send to them who 
cannot calculate their motions panics and portents of things to 
come to declare all this without visible illustrations of their 

with the text. The chief causes of offence 
are (i) the repeated interrogative /j.ed' 
ovanvas ovffnva.s, (i) the position of re 
after riiuv. Stallbaum would read Kara 
Xp&vovs rivds. I think however that the ms. 
reading may be defended as a double indi- 
rect interrogative : a construction which, 
though by far less common than the double 
direct interrogation, is yet quite a good 
one : cf. Sophokles Antigone 1341 ouS' e\a 
oira irpbs irorepov iSu. The literal render- 
ing of the clause will then be 'behind 
what stars at what times they pass before 
one another and are now severally hidden 
from us, now again reappearing &c.' The 
re after i)fuv really belongs to KaraKpvir- 
rovrai and is answered by the following 
Ka.1, quasi ^/juv...KaraKpuTrrovrai re Kal 
di>a<f>aiv6/j.voi...Tre'/j:irovfft. For the irregu- 
lar position of re compare Thukydides 
IV 115 oi 5 ' A.6r)va1ot Tj/jLvvavro re ^/c 
<j>av\ov reixifffJ-aros Kal dir' olKi&v eiraX- 
eis tyovyutv. And instances might be 
multiplied. So much for the main diffi- 
culties : there remain a few lesser points. 
& re rals l-vvdij/effiv (fiWi/'is is in tech- 
nical language 'conjunction') must of 
course be taken with /car' aXXiyXovs yiyvo- 
fitvoi alone: oerot Ka.ra.vri.Kpv denotes the 
contrary situation, 'opposition', yiyvo* 
/j.evoi must be supplied with 8<roi Karav- 
riKpv, and again with pe6' ov(rrivds re 
ewlirpovOev aXX^Xou : i.e. when a given 
star passes behind a second and before a 
third. The whole sentence, as I read it, 

is undeniably a very complicated piece 
of syntax; and it is possible enough that 
some mischief may have befallen the 
text; but I have seen no emendation 
convincing enough to warrant me in 
deserting the mss. And it should be re- 
membered that the Timaeus contains 
much more of involved construction than 
the earlier dialogues in general do. With 
fjLeO' ovffTivas is to be understood ruv 

9. TOIS ov Svvo.|xlvois] Although the 
negative rests on the authority of A 
alone, I have yet retained it, under- 
standing the sense to be that the celestial 
movements are held for signs and por- 
tents by those who do not comprehend 
the natural laws which govern them. 
The ov would very readily be omitted 
by a copyist living at a time when 
astrology had become prevalent, and 
recourse was had to the professional 
astrologer for interpretation of the signs 
of the heavens. If it be objected that 
the negative ought to be ny, I should 
reply that this is one of many cases where 
the negative coheres so closely with the 
participle as practically to form one 
word : cf. Isokrates de pace 1 3 vofdipre 
oi;s elvai TOI)S fj.f6vovras ruv 
l TOI)S vovv OVK 
5 (ppovovvrwv. There vovv OVK 
dvorjrovs, as here ov 




avev <ru>v> Sf oi/rea>9 rovreov avrwv //.tyu-^/i-aTwt' (j,draio<; av eiy 
7TWO9* aXXa ravra re t/cai/a>9 Tj/uf Tavrij /cat rd irepl 0ewv 
oparatv /cat yevvijrwv elprjf^eva ^>ucre&)9 e%ra> reXo?. 

XIII. ITept Be rcS^ a\\a)v BaifAovwv et7reti> /cat yvwvai TTJV 

5 yevetrtv f^ei^ov r) Kad* $/J,d<;, Treicrreov Be rot9 elpqic6<rtt> e^Trpoo'dev, 
etcyovots pev tfe&Ji' ovcriv, (09 e<f>acrav, cra<cw9 Se Trof roy9 ^e avrwv 
Trpoyovovs elSocriv dSvvarov ovv 6eu>v Traialv aTTicrTeiv, icaiTrep E 
aj/ev re et/coTa>z> /cat dvayicaiwv diro^ei^ewv \eyovo-iv, aXX' (09 
olfceia (f>aa~/c6vra>v (iTrayjeXXetv eiro^evov^ TO) i/o/iw Tricnevreov. 

jo o$Ta>9 o^y ar' e/cetVou9 ^/u.t^ ?; 7eve<rt9 TTept TOVTOJV TWV Oewv 
e'^era) /eat \eye<T0a). F^9 re /cat Ovpavov 7rai8e<t 'H/ceai/09 re 
/cat T^^t>9 eyeveaOrfv, rovrcav Be <&6pKvs Kpovos re /cat 'Pea /cat 
oo-ot /w.6ra TovrwVy K Be Kpovov /cat 'Pea9 Zei)9 "H/ja re /cat 41 A 
7raWe9 0(jou9 lapev d8e\<f)ov<> \eyopevov? avrwv, ert re royro)!' 

15 a\Xov9 etcyovovs. 

'Evret 8' ovv Trdvres, ocroi re 7repi7ro\ov(Ti, (fxivepdos /cat o<rot 
fyaivovrat, icaf? 'ocrov av eOeXwcriv, oi Beol <yeve<riv eff^ov, Xeyei 
7T/009 avrovs 6 roSe TO TTO.V ryvvt]<ra<? rd&e' eot Qewv, wv 

i avev T&V di 6ij/ ews scrips! auctore Proclo. aveu 5i6^ewj AHSZ. 
scripsi. aD TW^ AHSZ. 4 dcupovuv : dai/j.oi>lwv A. 9 

Kov<riv SZ. 17 oZ 9eol : oi omittunt SZ. 

i . avev < TWV > 81* o\j/ws] Proklos, 
in first citing this passage, gives avev 5t' 
dtyews avrwv TOVTUV /ii/UTj/udrwj' : presently, 
quoting it again, he says avev TUV 5t' 
otyews, and this I believe to be what 
Plato wrote. The vulgate avev Sioi/'ewj 
TOVTUV av TUV lufirjfMTUv is so uncouth a 
phrase that it surely cannot have pro- 
ceeded from him : even the word 5/o^ 
itself seems suspicious ; it occurs nowhere 
else before Plutarch. Following the 
text of Proklos then I construe &vev TUV 
Si' 6^ews fu/j.r)fjiaTuv avTuv TOVTUV with- 
out ocular representations of precisely 
these things : i.e. without a planetarium 
to illustrate the movements. Ficinus 
seems to have read avTwv, to judge from 
the word 'ipsorum' in his rendering. 

6. crcu|>ws 8^ irov] The irony of this 
passage, though it seems to have gene- 
rally escaped the commentators, is evi- 
dent ; more especially in the opening 

sentence of the next chapter. Plato had 
no cause for embroiling himself with 
popular religion. To his metaphysical 
scheme it is quite immaterial whether 
mankind is the highest order of finite 
intelligences beneath the stars, or whether 
there exist anthropomorphic beings of 
superior rank, such as the gods and 
daemons of the old mythology. 

40 D 41 D, c. xiii. Let us then 
acquiesce in the account given by chil- 
dren of the gods concerning their own 
lineage and accept the deities of the 
national mythology. When therefore all 
the gods of whatsoever nature had come 
into being, the Artificer addressed the 
work of his hands, and showed them 
how that, since they had a beginning, 
they were not in their own nature im- 
mortal altogether, yet should they never 
suffer dissolution, seeing that the sover- 
eign will of their creator was a firmer 

4i A] TIMAI02. 137 

very movements were labour lost. So let thus much suffice on 
this head and let our exposition concerning the nature of the 
gods visible and created be brought to an end. 

XIII. But concerning the other divinities, to declare and 
determine their generation were a task too mighty for us : 
therefore we must trust in those who have revealed it here- 
tofore, seeing that they are offspring, as they said, of gods, and 
without doubt know their own forefathers. We cannot then 
mistrust the children of gods, though they speak without pro- 
bable or inevitable demonstrations ; but since they profess to 
announce what pertains to their own kindred, we must conform 
to usage and believe them. Let us then accept on their word 
this account of the generation of these gods. Of Earth and 
Heaven were born children, Okeanos and Tethys ; of these 
Phorkys and Kronos and Rhea and all their brethren : and of 
Kronos and Rhea, Zeus and Hera and all whom we know to be 
called their brothers ; and they in their turn had children after 

Now when all the gods had come to birth, both those who 
revolve before our eyes and those who reveal themselves in so far 
as they will, he who begat this universe spake to them these words: 
Gods of gods, whose creator am I and father of works, which 

surety for their endurance than the vital that of Hesiod. For the construction 

bonds wherewith their being was bound compare Phaedrus 272 E TTO.VTUS \4yovra 

together. But the universe was not yet TO 5?) elxos diuKrtov : the idiom is common 

complete : three kinds of creatures must enough. 

yet be born, which are mortal. Now if 16. ocrou re TrtpwroXovo-i <J>avpo>s] 

the Artificer created these himself, they Those who 'revolve visibly' are of course 

must needs be immortal, since he could Plato's own gods, the stars of heaven; 

not will the dissolution of his own work ; the others are the deities of popular 

they must therefore derive their birth belief, who elvoi<riv toiKores d\\o6airoiffiv, 

from the created gods. Receiving then wavroioi TeMOovres, tiri<TTpw<t>wfft voXrjas. 

from him the immortal essence, the gods There seems again to be a quiet irony in 

should implant it in a mortal frame and the words <palvovrai KaO' o<rov av t6t- 

so generate mortal living creatures, that Xwcrtv. 

the universe may be a perfect copy of its 18. 0ol 8cwv] The exact sense of these 

tv P e - words has been much disputed. Setting 

9. cirojxfrovs TW vojio) iruTTCVT&v] aside neoplatonic mystifications, which 

cf. Laws 904 A ol Kara vo^ov ojrej 6eoL the curious may find in the commentary 

Plato indifferently acquiesces in the estab- of Proklos, the interpretations which 

lished custom. His theogony is said by seem to deserve notice are as follows. 

Proklos to be Orphic; it differs from (i) 'Gods born of gods'. This, though 



[41 A 

'0? Trarijp re epycov, a 6Y e/j,ov yevo^eva d\vra efiov ye 
fir} e6e\ovro<f' TO jj,ev ovv Brj BeOev rcav \vrov, TO ye JJLTJV /caXe3<? 
dp/jioa'Bev not e^ov ev \vetv e6e\,eiv tcaicov' Si' a /cal eTtenrep B 
yeyevrja-de, dOdvaroi /j,ev OVK ecrre ovS" d\vroi TO TrafiTrav, ov TI 

5 fjuev 81} \v6rjcrecf6e ye ovBe rev^ecrOe Oavdrov /Wpa?, T^<? e/w;? 
/SouXT/creeo? pei^ovos eri Bea/Mov fcdl icvpicorepov \a%6vr<> eiceivwv, 
ol? '6r eyiyveade %vve8ei<rde. vvv ovv o \eyo) TT/JO? v/J,d<i evBei- 
/cvvfievos, pdOere. 8vr)rd en, yevrj \onrd rpC dyevvrjra' rovrcav 
Be fjur) yevofAevwv ovpavos dre\rj<> eo~rai' rd yap arcavr ev avrfi 

10 76^7; a>a>v ov^ ejfei, Bel Be, el /zeXXei TeXeo? iicava><> elvai. 81* C 
e/toO Be ravra yevofieva /cat ftiov fierac^ovra Oeols l<rdoir av 

i tfjiov ye /J.r) (OtXovros : e/j.ov y edtXovTOi SZ. 8 a-yevinfra : dyfryra A. 

roi/TWf 5^ : Totiruv ovv S. 

supported by Martin as well as Stall- 
baum, seems to me inadmissible, for the 
plain reason that the only source whence 
they derived their birth was the dy/juovp- 
ybs himself; the plural 9ewt> then is with- 
out propriety or meaning. (2) 'Gods, 
images of gods', cf. rutv aiSiwv Oe&v 
yeyovbs ayaXpa. But ' images ' is not in 
the Greek, nor can be got out of it : and 
even granting that it could, the obscure 
words just quoted are far too unstable a 
basis for such an interpretation. (3) In 
my own judgment the phrase is simply 
an instance of rhetorical 6yKos, well suited 
to the stately pomp characterising the 
whole passage. ' Gods of gods' comes near- 
est, I believe, to the sense of the original, 
signifying solely the transcendent dignity 
of the ovpdvioi 6eoL, the first-fruits of 
creation. Superlatives of this kind, though 
not perhaps common in Greek, certainly 
exist: compare Sophokles Oed. Col. 1237 
Iva TrpoiravTa KaKa KaK&v vvoiKel : also 
Oed. Tyr. 465 o.pp-rjr' 1 appr/ruv reXtaavTa 
<f>ou>lai<Ti \epaLv: Aeschylus Persae 68 1 
u iriara, iriffTwv. Plato may have in his 
mind a comparison between the highest 
gods and dalfjioves of a lower rank, such as 
those of Phaedrus 247 A or Epinomis 
984 E : but this is not necessary. 

i. wv ryw Sr][uovp-y6s irarijp TC ^p^wv] 
These words are almost as much debated 

as the preceding, (i) The clause may 
be taken in apposition with 0eoi : sc. tpya, 
uv eyu Sijfuovpybs irarrip re : (2) uv may 
be governed by tpyuv, as Stallbaum takes 
it: (3) or by 8r]/j.iovpyfc. It can hardly 
be doubted that the interpretation is to 
be preferred which best lends itself to the 
majestic flow of Plato's rhythm ; and on 
that ground I should give the preference 
to the last, making we masculine : ' whose 
maker am I and father of works which 
through me coming into being &c.' 
The construction will thus really fol- 
low the same principle as the familiar 
idiom whereby a demonstrative is sub- 
stituted for the relative in the second 
member of a relative clause : as for 
instance in Euthydemus 301 E ravra 
fiyei (ra elvai, uv av apZys xoi ej; <roi 
auTois \pija6ai 8 TI av /SotfA?;. 

Badham (on Philebus 30 D) proposes 
to read the opening clauses thus : 0eol, 
Saujv ty& dr)(juovpybs iraT/ip re tpyuv, are 
5i' t/uiou yfv6/JLeva, dXvra /JLOV y' eO^Xovros. 
This is grammatically faultless, but, it is 
to be feared, sorely inadequate to the 
'large utterance' of the Artificer. The 
omission of /tr; before eOt\orros has the 
support of most mss. and gives an equally 
good sense : I retain however the reading 
of A, which is confirmed by Cicero's 
' me invito '. 




by me coming into being are indissoluble save by my will : 
Behold, all which hath been fastened may be loosed, yet to 
loose that which is well fitted and in good case were the will of 
an evil one. Wherefore, forasmuch as ye have come into being, 
immortal ye are not, nor indissoluble altogether ; nevertheless 
shall ye not be loosed nor meet with the doom of death, having 
found in my will a bond yet mightier and more sovereign than 
those that ye were bound withal when ye came into being. 
Now therefore hearken to the word that I declare unto you. 
Three kinds of mortal beings are yet uncreate. And if these 
be not created, the heaven will be imperfect; for it will not 
have within it all kinds of living things; yet these it must have, 
if it is to be perfect. But if these were created by my hands 
and from me received their life, they would be equal to gods. 

i. TO |iiv o5v 8ij] It is impossible not 
to admire the serenity with which all the 
editors set a full stop after edtXovros, and 
then make a fresh start, as though the 
words from deol to edtXovros were a sen- 
tence ; as though yiyvercu stood in place 
of yevoneva. It were easy to convert this 
into a sentence through milder means 
than Badham employed, by substituting 
TO, for a. But a certain unpleasing curt- 
ness is thereby introduced, which leads 
me to shrink from tampering with the 
text. I regard then all the words down 
to eflAojros as constituting an appella- 
tion. The difficulty then arises however, 
that the particles pv oh STJ seem to in- 
dicate the commencement of a fresh sen- 
tence. Yet the objection is not, I think, 
fatal: for although the words Oeol...edt- 
XOJ'TOS are not in form a sentence contain- 
ing a statement, they do practically convey 
a statement; and the Trpoarjyopla being 
somewhat extended, Plato proceeds as if 
the information implied in a description 
were given in the form of a direct asser- 
tion. The massive form of the opening 
address seems to justify a stronger combi- 
nation of particles at the commencement 
of the main sentence than could ordi- 
narily be used. 

4. oi! TI \&v Si]] For this strong adver- 
sative formula compare Theaetelus 187 A, 
PhiUbus 46 B, Phaedrus 259 B ; and, 
without ye, Theaetetus 148 E. 

7. ots or* yC*yvc<r6c uv8i<r0] Com- 
pare 43 A t-wKo\\<ai> ov rots dXuroij, ols 
avrol ZweixovTO, dfcr/j-dts: and 73 D KaO- 
airep ef ayxvpuv /SaXXo/u.ei'os e/c rovruv 
Traa-7/s i/'ux''? 5 5e<r/j.ofa. 

8. Y^vt] Xoiird rpCa] i.e. those which 
made their habitation in air, in water, 
and on land. 

u. Ocois l<rdoiT' av] This assertion 
of the drj/juovpybs that whatsoever immedi- 
ately proceeds from him must be immortal 
is, I think, not without its metaphysical 
significance. The creation of the universe 
by the 8rj/jiiovpy6s, we take it, symbolises 
the evolution of absolute intelligence into 
material nature, i.e. into the perceptions 
of finite intelligences. Now this evolution, 
the manifestation of supreme thought in 
the material world, is per se eternal it 
is an essential element in the being of 
eternal thought. But, the evolution once 
given, the things that belong to it as such 
are all transitory. Considered as making 
up the sum total of phenomenal nature, 
the infinite series of phenomena is eternal: 
but the phenomena themselves belong not 



[41 c- 

f iva ovv Bvrjra re $ TO re irav Tooe OVTWS cnrav 77, TpeireffOe Kara 
(frvcriv t'ftet? eir\ TTJV TWV %rpwv &r)fj,iovp i yiav, f^ifiov/jievoi TTJV efj,rjv 
Bvvafjiiv Trepl rrjv v/jbTepav yeveo-iv. Kal icaff oaov jiev avT<av 
dOavrirois O/JLWVV/AOV elvai TrpoaijKei, Oelov \j6/jLevov ij 
5 re ev aiJrot? TWV del 8i/cy KOI V/JLIV ede\6vTwv eirecrdai, 
Kal virap%dp,evos eyeo Traa&eocrar TO Be \OLTTOV 

ov Trpoo~v<f)aivovTe<f, aTrepyd^eade &>a Kal lyevvdre rpo^rjv re D 

av^dvere Kal <^6Lvovra 7rd\iv Se^ecrde. 
XIV. TaOr' elire, teal 7rd\tv eVt TOV irporepov /cparijpa, ev a> 
10 rrjv TOI) 7rai>T09 "^v^rjv Kepavvvs /J,ta-<ye, ra T<Z> Trpoadev wiro- 
\oi7ra Kare^elro fj.i<rya)v rpojrov pkv rtva TOV avrov, d/tijpaTa S' 
OVKCTI KaTa TavTci (ticravTO)<f, d\\d SevTepa Kal TpiTa. 
Be TO TTCLV Siei\e i/ry^a? urapiBpuvs rot9 a&Tpots, evei^e 0' e/cac 

to eternity, but to yfreffis. In other 
words, the exi'stetue of time and space is 
part of the being of absolute intelligence : 
the apprehension of things in time and 
space pertains to finite intelligences. 
Therefore, as phenomena apprehended in 
time and space do not directly pertain to 
absolute intelligence, so in the allegory 
mortal things are not directly the work of 
the Sriiuovpyos. 

i. Kva ovv 6inyra T $] Mortality is 
necessary in this way. The scheme of 
existence involves a material counterpart 
of the ideal world. To materiality be- 
longs becoming and perishing : accord- 
ingly aiffOijTa fa, the copies of the 
VOIJTO. fya, must, so far as material, 
be mortal. Mortality must correspond 
to immortality as inevitably as multi- 
plicity to unity. Even the stars, which, 
being the handiwork of the Artificer 
himself, are immortal, contain within 
them the processes of ytvecri.* and (f>0opd. 

Kara, 4>vo-iv] In the way of nature : 
i.e. /SX^Trojres 7jy>6s rb dlStov. 

3. KaO' So-ov] It has been proposed 
to omit Ko.9': but I think the text is suffi- 
ciently defended by Stallbaum. 

4. dOavarois 6ji,wvv|xov] The alffOrjrd 
f<a are ajOdvara, in so far as they possess 
the indestructible vital essence supplied 
by the creator ; but only, since 

their present mode of existence as indi- 
viduals is transitory. 

ifytfxovow] Here seems to be the 
first suggestion of a word which after- 
wards became a technical term common 
in the Stoic philosophy rd rryt/j.oviKov, 
the reason. We have it again similarly 
used in 70 C : cf. Laws 963 A vovv 64 ye 
iravruv rofrruv rfte/jLova. The genitive TUV 
t6e\6vTuv is governed by riye^ovovv. 

6. vrrapo|i.vos] This transitive use 
of the middle of this verb is not quoted in 
Liddell and Scott. 

7. Tpo4]v T 8i8ovTs] How they did 
this we learn in 77 A. The gods of course 
had no need of sustenance ; for, like the 
KOfffios, they avrol eavrois rpo<pT]v ryv eav- 
riav ipdtffiv'ix.ov. With <f>6lvovTa TraXiv 
S^x eff ^ compare 42 E Saveifo/j-tvoi /j.6pia 
us d.TroSo0ricr6/ji:va irdXiv : they created 
mortals out of the substance of the uni- 
verse, and at their dissolution restored 
the elements of them thither whence they 
were borrowed. 

41 D 42 E, c. xiv. Thus having 
spoken, the Artificer prepared a second 
blending of soul, having its proportions 
like to the former, but less pure. And of 
the soul so formed he separated as many 
portions as there were stars in heaven, 
and set a portion in each star, and 
declared to them the laws of nature : how 



Therefore in order that they may be mortal, and that this All 
may be truly all, turn ye according to nature unto the creation 
of living things, imitating my power that was put forth in the 
generation of you. Now such part of them as is worthy to 
share the name of the immortals, which is called divine and 
governs in the souls of those that are willing ever to follow 
after justice and after you, this I, having sown and provided it, 
will deliver unto you : and ye for the rest, weaving the mortal 
with the immortal, shall create living beings and bring them to 
birth, and giving them sustenance shall ye increase them, and 
when they perish receive them back again. 

XIV. Thus spake he ; and again into the same bowl wherein 
he mingled and blended the universal soul he poured what was 
left of the former, mingling it somewhat after the same manner, 
yet no longer so pure as before but second and third in pure- 
ness. And when he had compounded the whole, he portioned 
off souls equal in number to the stars and distributed a soul to 

that every single soul should be first 
embodied in human form, clothed in a 
frame subject to vehement affections and 
passions. And whoso should conquer 
these and live righteously, after fulfilling 
his allotted span, he should return to the 
star of his affinity and dwell in blessed- 
ness; but if he failed thereof, he should 
pass at death into the form of some lower 
being, and cease not from such transmi- 
grations until, obeying the reason rather 
than the passions, he should gradually raise 
himself again to the first and best form. 
Then God sowed the souls severally in 
the different planets, and gave the task 
of their incarnation to the gods he had 
created, to make them as fair and perfect 
as mortal nature may admit. 

10. rcL TWV irp6(T0V viroXonra] 
Not the remnants of the universal soul, 
as Stallbaum supposes ; for that, we are 
told in 36 B, was all used up ; but of the 
elements composing soul, ravrov Odrepov 
and ovffla. 

1 1 . d.KTJpara 8' OVK^TI] That is to 
say, the harmonical proportions are less 
accurate, and the Other is less fully 

subordinated to the Same : in other 
words, these souls are a stage further 
removed from pure thought, a degree 
more deeply immersed in the material. 
Compare Philebus 29 B foil. Plato's 
scheme includes a regular gradation of 
finite existences, from the glorious 
intelligence of a star down to the humblest 
herb of the field : all these are manifes- 
tations of the same eternal essence through 
forms more and more remote. 

13. SiciXe x|n>xds UrapWjiovs rots 
dorpois] There is a certain obscurity 
attending this part of the allegory, which 
has given rise to much misunderstanding. 
It is necessary to distinguish clearly 
between the vo/j-rj of the present passage 
and the <rir6pos of 42 D. What the 
dti/Movpybs did, I conceive to be this. 
Having completed the admixture of soul 
he divided the whole into portions, 
assigning one portion to each star. 
These portions, be it understood, are not 
particular souls nor aggregates of par- 
ticular souls : they are divisions of the 
whole quantity of soul, which is not as 
yet differentiated into particular souls. 



[41 E 

TT/OO? CKCHTTOV, teal efjL/3i/3d(ra<f a>s 6? o^na TTJV TOV Travrbs 
e, VO/AOVS re roi)? tlftappfoov? elirev avrais, oVt yeveais 
evoiTO TTayfMvrj pia 7rd<rtv, 'iva /Mtj rt? eXarrotTo VTT avrov, 
Beoi Be (nrapeicras avra<j et9 TO, Trpo&ijfcovra etcda-Tais etcacrTa 
5 opyava %povov <f>vvai %a>a)v TO Oeoae/Sea-TaTov, Bnr\rjs Be ovtrr)? 42 A 
TTJS dvBpwjriwrjs <j>v<Ta)s TO Kpeirrov TOIOVTOV etrj yevos, o real 
eTreira KK\ijcroiro dvijp. oirore 8rj o-ut^iaaiv e^vrevOelev el; 
, real TO fikv irpoo'ioi, TO 8' curloi TOV crcaftaTos avTwv, 
fiev aiffdrjcriv dvaytcaiov ir) piav Trdcriv eic jSiaiwv ira- 
vfi,<f)VTOv yiyve&Oat, SevTepov Be 77801/77 Kai \virr) fi- 
epa>Ta, ?rpo? Be TOVTOIS (f>6f3ov teal OvfJiov oa-a T etro- 
fieva avTois teal oiroaa evavTiws 7re<j)VK BiecrTijicoTa' oov el [lev B 

i ^* : e/j S. 5 xpovov : xpi'w AHSZ. 

It is hardly necessary to observe that 
these ^uxl Iffdpi6/j.oi TO?S dffrpois are 
quite distinct from the souls of the stars 
themselves. Next the 5r)/uovpy&s explains 
to these still undifferentiated souls the 
laws of nature; after which he redis- 
tributes the whole quantity of soul among 
the planets (Spryava xfdvov, 42 D) for 
incarnation in mortal bodies. From the 
language of 42 D, roily n&...Tofa d, it 
would seem that the differentiating of the 
souls into individual beings was done by 
the Srjfuovpybs himself, before they were 
handed over to the created gods : in fact 
this is metaphysically necessary. 

Martin's interpretation appears to me 
wholly unplatonic, indeed unintelligible. 
He regards the if/vx^ Iv6.pi0ij.oi. as distinct 
from the soul that was afterwards to 
inform mortal bodies. 'C'est a ces 
grandes ames confines aux astres, c'est a 
ces vastes depots de substance incorporelle 
et intelligente, que Dieu revele ses 
desseins.' This he himself most justly 
terms an ' etrange doctrine ', and certainly 
it is not Plato's. It is surely indubitable 
that what the Sriniovpybs mixed in the 
Kparrjp was the whole substance of soul 
intended to be differentiated into par- 
ticular souls ; that this whole substance 
was first distributed in large portions 
among the fixed stars, to learn the laws of 

5 XPO"v X 

existence; and that finally it was redis- 
tributed among the planets for division 
into separate souls incorporated in bodies. 

But what is the purpose and meaning 
of this distribution among the fixed stars ? 
I think the explanation is suggested by 
Phaedrus 252 c, D, where different gods are 
assigned as patrons for persons of various 
temperament. The apportionment to 
diverse stars is thus a fanciful way of ac- 
counting for innate diversity of character 
and disposition ; each individual being in- 
fluenced by the star to which the division 
was assigned of which what was after- 
wards his soul formed a part. 

i. ws & o\T)|xa] The same word is 
used in 69 D to express the relation 
of body to soul in the human being, 
although the relation is different to that 
here indicated ; for these \fsvxal do not 
inform and vitalise the body of the star, 
which is to them solely a 'vehicle '. 

TI]V TOV iravTAs <fnj<riv l-Sci^c] It 
is interesting to observe that here in 
Plato's maturest period we have some- ! 
thing closely resembling the avap.vriais of 
the Phaedo and Phaedrus. To say that 
the laws of the universe were declared to 
soul before it became differentiated into 
individual souls is very much the same 
thing as to say that the soul beheld the 
ideas in a previous existence. At the same 

42 B] 



each star, and setting them in the stars as though in a chariot, 
he shewed them the nature of the universe and declared to 
them its fated laws; how that the first incarnation should be 
ordained to be the same for all, that none might suffer dis- 
advantage at his hands ; and how they must be sown into the 
instruments of time, each into that which was meet for it, and 
be born as the most god-fearing of all living creatures ; and 
whereas human nature was twofold, the stronger was that race 
which should hereafter be called man. When therefore they 
should be of necessity implanted in bodily forms, and of their 
bodies something should ever be coming in and other passing 
away, in the first place they must needs all have innate one and 
the same faculty of sense, arising from forcible affections ; next 
love mingled with pleasure and pain ; and besides these fear 
and wrath and all the feelings that accompany these and such 

time the tendency to merge the individual 
existence of the soul is characteristic of 
the Timaeus and of Plato's later thought. 
2. y^ v0 ' l 5 irpwrri] i.e. their first 
embodiment in human form. Stallbaum 
is obviously wrong in understanding by 
irpuTrj 7^i/ecrts the distribution among the 
stars, since the devrtpa ytvevis is the 
incarnation eh yvvaixos <pvffiv, 42 B. Here 
however a point presents itself in which 
the allegory appears prima facie incon- 
sistent. At 39 E Plato says there are 
four etSri of voijTa f<po in the avrb f<fot> : yet 
of al<?6T}T&, ipa. we only have two efSr; at the 
outset : how then is the sensible world a 
faithful image of the intelligible world ? 
The answer would seem to be that the 
di]fj.iovpyds foresaw that many souls must 
necessarily degenerate from the irpurrri 
Kal dpiffrr) is, and therefore left the 
perfect assimilation of the image to the 
type to be worked out and completed in 
the course of nature, with which he did 
not choose arbitrarily to interfere, in 
order that no soul might start at a 
disadvantage through his doing : 1W /it?} 
rts ACITTCKTO UTT' ai^roO. It is remarkable 
however that the perfection of the copy 
should be accomplished through a process 
of degeneration. 

4. 86n 8i orrapeCo-as] Stallbaum for 
some incomprehensible reason would in- 
sert /nerd, before ff7rapet<ras. The Sijfu- 
ovpybs is referring to the inropos of 42 D, 
which must take place before the incar- 
nation in mortal bodies can be accom- 
plished. 6pyava xpovov, a phrase recurring 
in 42 D, = the planets : the vulgate x/>o- 
vwv is clearly a copyist's error. The rea- 
son why one planet was more suitable for 
some souls than another does not appear. 

5. u><ov T& Otoo-ep&rraTOv] i.e. man- 
kind : cf. Laws 902 B d'yu.a teal 6to<refiea- 
TO.TOV ai/ro e<rrt TT&VTUV fyuv a.v6p<atros. 

7. 4 dvd-yKT)s] This phrase expresses 
the unwilling conjunction of spirit and 
matter, the reluctance of soul to accept 
corporeal conditions : cf. 69 D (rvyicepa.- 
ffdfjLfvoi ravra. dva.yKa.lws, and a little 
above Setv d. ical dvayKaia irad-fif^ara iv 
eavry tx ov - The whole account in 69 c, D 
is full of echoes of the present passage. 

8. rd jxiv irpo<roi r<J 8* dirfoi] i.e. 
the body is undergoing a perpetual pro- 
cess of waste and reparation : cf. 43 A 
tvtSovv e/s firippvrov ffwfj.a Kai airbppvTov. 

9. piaCcov ira0T||j,aT6>v] I take ftmluv 
to mean vehement and masterful, though 
it might be understood like dvayKaia in 



[42 B 


Kparijcrotev, 8iKrj fttracroivro, KparrjOevret &e do'iKtq. Kal 6 fj,ev ev rov 
Trpoo-rJKovra %povov ftiovs, Trd\iv et9 T>}V rov ^vvvoftov rropevdels 
oiKrjcriv do-rpov, ftLov ev&aifiova Kal (rvvr/Or) eor o~(f)a\el<; 8e 

rovrcov ei9 <yvvaiKo<> (bvcriv ev rrj Sevrepa yeveo~ei u,Ta/3a\ot' u,r> 

r>v , , v ' / ,v 

Travopevos oe ev rovrois eri KaKias, rporrov ov KaKvvotro, Kara C*, r ta , 

rrjv ofioiorijra T^9 rov rporrov yeveo-ecos et9 riva roiavryv del 

/,./!/ , I >^>> ' I I -\ If- 

yaerapaXot vrjpeiov <pvo~iv, a\\arra)v re ov rrporepov irorwv \,r/got, 
rrplv rfj ravrov Kal ofioLov TrepioSw rfj ev avrq> ^vvercLcnro^evo^ rov 
iro\vv o'faov Kal varepov irpoafyvvra e/c rcvpos Kal vbaros Kal 
depot Kal 7^9, Oopvftw&r) Kal d\oyov ovra, \6y(a Kparrja-as e/9 TO T^9 D 
7rp&)T?79 Kal dpto~rv)<> d<j)LKoiro et^o9 e^e<09. SiadearfjLoderri&as 8e 
Trdvra avrols ravra, Iva rrjt ejreira eltj KaKias eKao~rwv avairios, 

i Kpo.T-f]<roifv : Kparfiffeiav S, qui mox tv Slxy dedit. 2 \povov /3<ous : /9toi)j 

Xpovov S, nescio an recte. 5 irav6fj.evos 5^ : iravofxvos re AHZ. 8 i-vveiri- 

ffTTo/jLevos :>os AHZ. 

1. riv irpo<r^KOvra \povov] No defi- 
nite period is ordained in the Timaeus, 
as is the case in the myths of the Phaedrus 
and Republic. 

2. rot) wvo|w>v] i.e. the star to 
which was distributed the portion of soul 
whence his individual soul afterwards 
proceeded, a w-^Bij = congenial : the con- 
ditions of life in the vuvvonnv aarpov 
would be familiar from the soul's former 
residence in it, though she was not then 

4. As ywaiKos 4>^<riv] Here, it must 

be confessed, we have a piece of ques- 
tionable metaphysic. For the distinction 
of sex cannot possibly stand on the same 
logical footing as the generic differences 
between various animals ; and in the 
other forms of animal life the distinction 
is ignored. It is somewhat curious that 
Plato, who in his views about woman's 
position was immeasurably in advance of 
his age, has here yielded to Athenian 
prejudice so far as to introduce a dis- 
sonant element into his theory. 

p-cTdpoXoi] After this word the old 
editions insert x'-^ loffT V ^ ^ Tet a/j,tj>6- 
Tff>ai aQiKvotifJievai tirl K\T?IP<J}<TIV Kal 
atpfffiv TOV Sevr^pov filov alpovvrai &t> av 
filov fKOffTTrf tv9a Kal fit 

I}/VXT) aQiKvelrat. These words, 
which stand in the margin of two mss., are 
simply quoted from Phaedrus 249 B. 

5. Kara Tqv 6|Aoiorr]Ta] That is to 
say, they assumed the form of those 
animals to whose natural character they 
had most assimilated themselves by their 
special mode of misbehaviour ; cf. Phaedo 
8 1 E tvSovvra.1 St, diffirtp elKos, ets roiavra 
fjQri OTTOI' &TT' av Kal fj^efjifXerriKviai rti- 
\<i)ffiv tv T<f pl(j} : and presently we see 
that the sensual take the form of asses, 
the cruel and rapacious that of hawks 
and kites. 

8. TTJ TO.VTOV Kal OflOLOV TTpl.68u)j 

Even in the lower forms the principle 
of reason is present, only more or less 
in abeyance. But once let the soul listen 
to its dictates, so far as in that condition 
it can make itself heard, and she may 
retrieve one step of the lost ground at the 
next incarnation. 

12. tva TTJS ?irtiTa] Here as in the 
Republic Plato absolves God from all re- 
sponsibility for evil: cf. Republic 3790 
oW dpa 6 6eos, eirttdr) ayaffos, iravruv av 
efy afrios, ws of TroXXoi \fyovaiv, a\X' 
6\lyuv fttv TOIS dvOpwirois atnos, TTO\\UV 
5^ dvalrios' iroXb yap eXarrw rdyada ruv 
KO.KWV r]fuv. Kal TUV dyaduv ovdtva 


as are of a contrary nature : and should they master these 
passions, they would live in righteousness ; if otherwise, in un- 
righteousness. And he who lived well throughout his allotted 
time should be conveyed once more to a habitation in his 
kindred star, and there should enjoy a blissful and congenial 
life: but failing of this, he should pass in the second incar- 
nation into the nature of a woman ; and if in this condition he 
still would not turn from the evil of his ways, then, according 
to the manner of his wickedness, he should ever be changed 
into the nature of some beast in such form of incarnation as 
fitted his disposition, and should not rest from the weariness of 
these transformations, until by following the revolution that is 
within him of the same and uniform, he should overcome by 
reason all that burden that afterwards clung around him of fire 
and water and air and earth, a troublous and senseless mass, 
and should return once more to the form of his first and best 

And when he had ordained all these things for them, to the 
end that he might be guiltless of all the evil that should be in 

aXXoj' airtarfov, rQiv dl KO.KUIV aXX' arra Set 
ftyTeiv ra atria, a'XX' 01) rbv Oeov. See too 
Republic 6170, Laws 900 E, 904 A c, and 
especially Theaetetus 176 A dXX' otir' airo- 
\4ffOat ret (ca/ca Svvarov, w QeoSupe' virevav- 
rlov yap TI ry dyady del elvai avdyKy o&r' 
eV Oeois avra ISpvcrdai, TTJP 5 Ovijrj]v <f>v<riv 
Kal rovde rov TOTTOV irepiiroXei e avdyKrjs. 
In other words, to soul, as such, no evil 
can attach in any form whatsoever. Ab- 
solute spirit then in itself has no part in 
evil nor can be the cause of any. With 
the evolution of absolute spirit into finite 
souls arises evil ; it is one of the condi- 
tions of limitation as much as space and 
time are. Evil then attaches to finite 
souls, not qua souls, which were impos- 
sible, but qua finite. Yet, seeing that in 
the Platonic system the evolution of the 
infinite into the finite is a necessary law 
of being, can it be said that God, or ab- 
solute spirit, is irresponsible for evil, 
since that spirit necessarily must mani- 
fest itself in a mode of existence to which 

P. T. 

Plato declares that evil must inevitably 
attach? and why is it that evil must a- 
rise together with limited existence ? To 
these questions Plato has returned no 
explicit reply : only we may deduce thus 
much from his ontological scheme since 
the realm of absolute essence is a stable 
unity, the realm of finite existence is a 
moving plurality, a process. And if a 
process, we can only conceive, on Plato's 
principles, that it is a process towards 
good. Therefore imperfection must al- 
ways attach to it, since it is ever ap- 
proaching but never reaches the good. 
Were perfection predicable of it, it would 
be the good the eternal changeless unity : 
the two sides of the Platonic antithesis 
would coalesce ; motion and plurality 
would vanish, and we should relapse into 
the Eleatic (v which has been proved un- 
workable. In this sense Plato may say 
that evil is necessary and that it belongs 
to matter, not to God. At the same time 
since the absolute cannot exist without 




[ 4 2 D 

TOI)? fj,ev ei? yfjv, TOI)<? 8' et<? <T\rjvr)v, TOI)<? o ei<? TXXa 
o<ra opyava y^povov TO 8e fjLerd TOV cnropov rot? z/eot? Trape&w/ce 
0eol<t (rcbfjuara TrXarreiv OvijTa, TO re eV/XotTroz/, oeroy ert /i> 
tyvxijs dvOpwirivr) 1 * &eov Trpoayevea'Ocu, TOVTO KOI Trdvff ocra E 
5 dicoXovda Kivoi<f ctTrepyacrafjievov*; ap%iv, Kal Kara ^vva^nv o Tt 
K(i\\i(7Ta Kal apta-ra TO OvrjTov SiaKvftepvav oooi>, o TI pr) KCLK&V 
aiiTo eavTw yiyvoiTO afciov. 

XV. Kat 6 /lev &rj aTravTa TavTa Siard^a<; epevev ev T<a 

eavTOv Kara Tpojrov rjOei' pevovTOS Be vo-rjaavTes ol 7rat8e<? TTJV 

10 TOU TraTpos SiaTagiv eireiOovTO avTy, Kal Xa/So^Te? dOdvaTov 

dpxfjv 6vr)Tov ^(aov, fj,ifj,ov/JiVO(. TOV afy&Tepov 8r)jjuovp<y6v, Trvpbs 

Kal 7779 vSaTO? T Kal aepo? dtro TOV KOO-/AOV Savei^ofievot pbpia, 

i a 7rd\iv, et? TayToy T \a^^avo^eva <TvveKoK\.a>v, 43 A 
ol? ai^Tot %vveiyovTO Se<r/^ot9, aXXa Bid 


15 TrjTa aopaTOi? TTVKVOIS 70/i^>ot5 gvvTr/KovTes, ev eg 
d7repya^6/j,evoi <ra)fj,a eKacrTov, T? TJ?? ddavaTov 

10 Siara&j' : Ta^t< A pr. m. S. 

ov TOi? 

manifesting itself as the finite, and since 
to the finite belongs evil, the ultimate 
cause of evil is really carried back to the 
absolute, though not qua absolute. 

i. 6' xpo vov ] This sowing 
seems to have been confined to the earth 
and the seven planets; for these alone 
appear to be recognised as instruments of 
time in 39 c, D. It would presumably 
follow then that to these gods only was 
committed the formation of the mortal 

3. r6 T &ir\oiirov] This clearly re- 
fers to the Ovrirbv eWos i/vxfy of 69 D : 
i.e. those functions and activities of the 
soul which are called into being by her 
conjunction with matter. 

7. avrA !avr$] Evil in some shape 
or other is, as we have seen, an inevitable 
concomitant of material existence. But 
if we follow after pure reason, this evil 
is kept at the lowest minimum; if we 
perversely forsake her, it is needlessly 
aggravated. So that while we are not 
answerable for whatsoever of evil is in- 
separnble from limitation, for all that is 

the result of our own folly we are an- 
swerable. Compare Laws 904 B T?}S S 
yevtcreus TOV iroiov rivbs a<f>fjice rais fiov- 
\rpeau> fKaffruv raj oiV/as 1 Siry yap av 
eiriOv/j.^ Kal OTTOIOS TIS uv Trjv ^vxyv, Tatirr) 
<rxfS6v exaffTore Kal rotouros yiyvfrai anas 
Tjfj.uv aw rb TroXy. A further discussion of 
Plato's position as regards the problem 
of free will is to be found in note on 
86 D. 

42 E 44 D, c. xv. And the eter- 
nal God was abiding in his own unity. 
But the created gods, following the 
example of their creator, fashioned mor- 
tal creatures, fettering the motions of 
the soul in a material body, whereof 
they borrowed the substance from that of 
the universe. And the soul, being im- 
prisoned in a body subject to ceaseless 
inflowing and outflowing, is at first con- 
founded and distracted. For the per- 
petual stream of nourishment that enters 
in, together with the bewildering effect 
of external sensations, throws her into 
disorder and tumult: the revolution of 
the Same in her is brought to a stand. 

43 A] 



each of them, God sowed some in the earth, some in the moon, 
and some in the other instruments of time. And what came 
after the sowing he gave into the hands of the young gods, to 
mould mortal bodies, and having wrought all the residue of 
human soul that needed yet to be added, to govern and guide 
as nobly and perfectly as they could the mortal creature, in so 
far as it brought not evil upon its own head. 

XV. So when he had made all these ordinances for them 
God was abiding after the manner of his own nature : and as he 
so abode, the children thinking on the command of their father 
were obedient to it, and having received the immortal principle 
of a mortal creature, imitating their own artificer, they bor- 
rowed from the universe portions of fire and of earth and of 
water and of air, on condition that they should be returned 
again, and they cemented together what they took, not with the 
indissoluble bonds wherewithal they themselves were held to- 
gether, but welding it with many rivets, invisible for smallness, 
and making of all the elements one body for each creature, they 
confined the revolutions of the immortal soul in a body in- 

while that of the Other is distorted or 
reversed : its harmonic proportions cannot 
indeed be destroyed, save by the creator 
alone, but they are in every way strained 
and perturbed. Accordingly, when she 
has to judge concerning anything, that it 
is same or other, her judgment is wrong, 
and she is filled with falsehood and folly : 
and reason, which seems to rule, is really 
enslaved by sensation. For all these 
causes the soul, at her first entrance into 
a body, is devoid of reason. But presently, 
as the disturbance caused by the require- 
ments of nutrition and growth diminishes, 
the circles of the Same and the Other 
gradually resume their proper functions, 
and reason regains her sway. But 
careful and rational training is requisite 
in order that a man may enjoy his full 
intellectual liberty : lacking this, his life 
will be maimed, and imperfect and un- 
reasonable he will pass beneath the shades. 
This chapter supplies a theory to 
account for the abeyance of reason in 

infants and young children. 

8. '4\i.vtv (V TW lavroiJ] This phrase 
is significant. Plato does not say that 
the dt)/j.iovpyds returned to his own rjOos, 
but that he 'was abiding' therein. The 
imperfect expresses that not only after 
he had given these instructions, but 
previously also, he was abiding. The 
eternal essence, while manifesting itself 
in multiplicity, still abides in unity. The 
process of thought-evolution does not 
affect the nature of thought as it is in 
itself: thought, while many and manifold, 
is one and simple still. 

13. s diro8o0T|<r6|Mva] Plato always 
insists that the sum of all things, whether 
spiritual or material, is a constant quantity. 
Accordingly the gods had to borrow from 
the store of materials already existing ; 
there could be no addition. 

15. irvKVOis y < ^F l< } ><HS ] i' e> l ^ e ^ aw f 
cohesion in matter. The word 76^04, 
as contrasted with Se<rp.ol, gives the 
notion of inferior durability. 

IO 2 



[43 A 

eveSovv et9 eTrippvTOV cr</j,a Kal aTroppvTov. at 8' 19 
eV8e#et<rat -TroXvv OVT e/cparow OVT CKpaTovvTO, /3ia S' e<f>epovTo 

Kal <})pOV, WCTT6 TO [AV '6\OV KiVeio~6ai %G)OV, ttTaKTO)^ /Jbr/V OTTrj B 

yap TO 7rp6o-0 Kal o7ri(T0v /cat TrdXiv et9 Se^ta /cat dpiaTepd K.O.TW 
TC Kal ava> Kal jrdvTp KaTcL TOV? 6% TOTTOVS 'jrXavwjJ.eva Trporjeiv. 
TTO\\OV yap oi>T09 TOV /cara/cXu OVTO<> Kal diroppiovTOS KV/MITO^, o 
TTJV Tpo<j>rjv 7rapet%ei>, en /iet^w 06pv/3ov aTretpyd&To ra TWV 
TrpoaimrTovTwv iraQr^iaTa e/ca<TTOt9, ore TTf/Jt TrpocrKpoixreie TO C 
> (Tco/ia Ttvo9 e^o)0v aXXorptw TreptTv^ov 77 /cat o-Tepeo> 7^9 vypolf 
T6 o\icr0r/iJ,a<Tiv v&aTwv, efre aX# TrvevpdTWv VTTO depos 
KaTa\rj(f)0ir], Kal VTTO irdvTwv TOVTOJV Sid TOV <r<w/iaro9 at 
<ret9 eTTt T?}I> ^i>X^ v < f> e po/ J 'vai' TrpocrTriTTTOiev' at 8?) /cat eTretra 
Sta raura K\ij0f)0'dv re /cat z/Oy ert ala0rjcrei<i ^vvaTracrai KC- 
K\rjVTai. Kal Brj Kal Tore > TW TrapovTC 7r\ei(TTr)v Kal fjLeyicrTijv 
7rap6%6fivat, Kivrjo-iv, ^tera TOV peovTos eV8eXe^<09 o^eroi) Kivovaai D 
/cat cr(f)oSpc39 o~elovcrai ra9 T7?9 / v/''i/Y^9 7reotoSou9, TJ?I> itey rauroO 

r9 ro 

Kal lovcrav, 

evavTia avTrj peov&ai Ka 
' ai5 0aTepov 8te<jet<rai/, o 

: trpoff^vai A. 5 irpbcrOe : irpovQev S. n <t>epo/j.tvuv : fapofdvov A. 

I. 4irppVTOV craS^a Kal <X7r6pp\)TOv] 
Plato's Herakleitean theory of matter 
could hardly find stronger expression than 
this. Fresh particles are being perpetually 
added to the body's substance to supply 
the place of others which are for ever 
flying off. Compare Theaetetus 159 B 

at 8' tls iroranov] It may be this 
expression was suggested by the well- 
known words of Herakleitos (fr. 41 
Bywater) Trora/JLoiffi. Sis rdiffi avroifft OVK 
S.v &repa y&p Kal Zrepa ttripptei 
vSara : cf. Cratylus 402 A. According to 
Aristotle metaph. F v ioio a 13, Kratylos 
fpund this statement not thorough-going 
enough: 'Hpa/cXefTy iirtrlna. dir6vTi OTI 
Sh T(f avrif iroTa/jiQ OVK fora*'ijt'ai' 
aOroj ybp yero ovd' a.Tra.%. Proklos is 
perhaps right in supposing Plato's irora/j.t>s 
to include not the body only in which the 
soul resides, but generally the region of 

ecrtj in which she is placed : 6 /^P 5rj 
Tafj.6s ov rd avBp&wivov Si) <rw/j.a ffrj- 
vei /j-bvov, dXXa xai iraffav TT\V ireptKei- 

avrrjs Kal ad'Ta6fi.'r}Tov pvfjv. 

i. ^epovTO Kal ?4>pov] The vepioSoi 
could not be altogether passive, that 
being impossible for an animate being ; 
the external impressions and the subjective 
consciousness mutually interacted and 
conditioned each other. 

4. roLs ij; cnrdVas] These six are 
reckoned as all for the present purpose, 
since the seventh, or rotary motion, 
belongs only to beings of a higher order. 
It may be noted that a completely 
different classification of Kivrpeis is given 
in Laws 893 C foil., where 10 kinds are 

7. iroXXov ydp ovros] Two chief 
causes are assigned by Plato for the 
dormant state of the intellect in the case of 

D] TIMAIO2. 149 

flowing and out-flowing continually. And they, being confined 
in a great river, neither controlled it nor were controlled, but 
bore and were borne violently to and fro ; so that the whole 
creature moved, but advanced at random without order or 
method, having all the six motions : for they moved forward 
and backward and again to right and to left and downward and 
upward, and in every way went straying in the six directions. 
For great as was the tide sweeping over them and flowing off 
which brought them sustenance, a yet greater tumult was caused 
by the effects of the bodies that struck against them ; as when 
the body of any one came in contact with some alien fire that 
met it from without, or with solid earth, or with liquid glidings 
of water, or if he were caught in a tempest of winds borne on 
the air, and so the motions from all these elements rushing 
through the body penetrated to the soul. This is in fact the 
reason why these have all alike been called and still are called 
sensations (atcr^o-et?). Then too did they produce the most 
wide and vehement agitation for the time being, joining with the 
perpetually streaming current in stirring and violently shaking 
the revolutions of the soul, so that they altogether hindered the 
circle of the Same by flowing contrary to it, and they stopped 
it from governing and from going ; while the circle of the Other 

infants: the first is the continual influx of 14. Bid raura 4K\TJ9r)(rav] What is 
nutriment, which the growing child re- the etymology intended is not very 
quires ; the second and yet more potent obvious from the context ; but probably, 
cause is the violent effect produced by as Martin says, Plato meant to connect 
outward sensations, which bewilder and afcr^crts with dicraru. Proklos also pro- 
overwhelm the soul but newly arrived poses the Homeric word atedu : cf. Iliad 
in the world of becoming and inex- xvi 468 6 3 Ppa\e 6v^v dlirOuv : but 
perienced in its conditions. this suggestion has not very much to 

10. dXXorpCw irepiTvxov] Plato says recommend it. 

' alien ' fire, because, as we learn in 45 B, 1 6. jwrd TOV p^ovros v8f\exs 6x- 

there is a fire, viz. daylight, which is TOV] i.e. combined with the (cu/ua T^S 

akin to the fire within our bodies and Tpo<f>7Js. 

therefore harmless to us. All the four 18. -iravrairao-iv lir^Srjo-av] It should 

elements are described, each in its own be observed that the effect on the two 

way, as conspiring to the soul's confusion. circles is different : that of the Same is 

The poetical tone of this passage is very stopped ; i.e. the reason does not act : 

noticeable. that of the Other is dislocated; and dis- 

13. lirl TT|V ^vx^y] This theory is torted ; i.e. the reports of the senses are 

fully set forth in 64 B foil. : see also confused and inaccurate. 
Philebus 33 D. 

150 tlAATHNOS [43 D 

Bt7r\a(TLOv Kal rpnr\a<riov rpels etcarepas diroa-rdaeis ical rd<j rwv 
rj p,LO\ia)V Kal emrplrwv Kal eiroyBoatv //.ecror^ra? Kal 
eireiBr) 7rai>Te\<w<? \vral OVK r)<rav TrXrjv vrro rov gv 
7ra<ra? p,ev o-rpe-^rai, arpo(f>d<;, iracras Be K\do~eis Kal 
5 r<av KVK\tov e/jLTTOielv, oaa^fJTTep rjv Bvvarov, &o~re per* d\\ij\(ov 
fAoyts vv%o/jLeva<; <j>epe<rdai f^ev, dXoyws Be <j)epe(r6ai, rore fj,ev 
dvrtas, d\\ore Be TrXayias, rore Be inrrias' olov orav Ti9 VTTTIOS 
e'pe/cras Tr)v K<j)a\r)v ftev eVi 7775, TOI)<? Be TroSa? dvo) 7rpocr/3a\<av 
*X!J 'R'pos TIVI, Tore ev TOVTW TW Trddet rov re rrd&'xpvros Kal rwv 

10 opwvrwv rd re 8eid dpicrrepd Kal rd dpiarepd Bet,d e/carepot? 
rd eKarepwv <f>avrderai. ravrbv Brj rovro Kal roiavra erepa at, 
Trepufropal 7rd<r%ovcrai a(f)oBpw<f, orav ye rq> rwv e^wOev rov ravrov 44 A 
yevovs 17 rov Oarepov irepirv^oxn,, rore ravrov rw Kal Odrepov 
rov rdvavria rwv d\r}0oov Trpoo-ayopevovaai tyevBeis Kal avorjroi 

15 yeyova&w, ovSe/Jiia re ev avrais rore rrepioBos dp^ovaa ovB' 
qye/AWV ecrriv al? S' dv e%u>6ev alcrdijo'eif rti/e? (frepo/mevai, Kal 
rrpoarreaovGai vve7ri,<r7rdo~a>vrai, Kal TO T^? V'' L '%^ <? dvrav Kvros, 
roO* avrat Kparovpevai Kparelv SoKOV(7t. Kal Bid Brj ravra Trdvra 
rd ready par a vvv /car' dp^d^ re dvovs "^v^rj ryiyverai TO rrpwrov, B 

20 oVai> et? o-wfia evBe6fj Qvrjrov. orav Be TO T^9 avj;r)<; Kal rpo<j)r)s 
12 Srav ye: STOP re AH. 15 tv avrais : & eavrous A. 16 als 5' dv : dv 5' au S. 

2. (j,<r6TT)Tas Kal <rvv8^o-is] These Proklos. Suppose a man to stand facing 
words merely signify 'means and con- the north; then he will of course have 
necting links'; they contain no special the east on his right hand, the west on 
reference to the Aet)tt/t, as Stallbaum his left: then let him lie down on his 
imagines. back, still keeping the east on his right, 

3. Xvral OVK ^rav] The dissolution and then raise his feet in the air, so that 
of the fj.e<rt>Tr)Tes Kal <rvv5tffeis would of he stands on his head : he will now be 
course involve the destruction of the looking south, while east and west will 
soul. still be to right and to left as before. 

7. dvTfa,s...irXa i ytas...vjrras] It is But a person looking south in the natural 

not very clear what is the precise import way has east to the left, and west to the 

of these terms. Perhaps we may under- right. Therefore our inverted one, know- 

stand the meaning to be that the false ing that he is looking south, will feel as if 

report of the senses may be either a the east were on his left, though it is not 

negation of the truth, or diverse from it, so. Thus along with his inverted position 

or contrary to it : e.g. fire is not hot, fire his notion of right and left is inverted. 

is smoke, fire is cold. So far as the It seems to me however that such a 

figure is concerned, it would seem im- display of athletic skill is unnecessaiy. 

possible to draw any distinction between All that Plato's meaning requires is this : 

eb'Tfas and i/Trlas. if A and B stand face to face, B's right is 

to. Ta rt Stjjid dpwrrtpa] The nature of course opposite A's left. But if A 

of this inversion is thus expounded by stand on his head, still facing B, then 

44 Bl TIMAIOl 151 

they displaced, so that the double and triple intervals, being 
three of each sort, and the means and junctures of f and f and , 
since they could not be utterly undone save by him that joined 
them, were forced by them to turn in all kinds of ways and to 
admit all manner of breaking and twisting of the circles, in 
every possible form, so that they can barely hold to one another, 
and though they are in motion, it is motion without law, some- 
times reversed, now slanting, and now inverted. It is as though 
a man should stand on his head, resting it on the earth and 
supporting his feet against something aloft ; in this case the man 
in such condition and the spectators would reciprocally see right 
and left reversed in the persons of each other. The same and 
similar effects are produced with great intensity in the soul's 
revolutions : and when from external objects there meets them 
anything that belongs to the class of the Same or to that of the 
Other, then they declare its relative sameness or difference quite 
contrariwise to the truth, and show themselves false and irra- 
tional ; and no circuit is governor or leader in them at that 
time. And whenever sensations from without rushing up and fall- 
ing upon them drag along with them the whole vessel of the soul, 
then the circuits seem to govern though they really are governed. 
On account then of all these experiences the soul is at first 
bereft of reason, now as in the beginning, when she is confined in 
a mortal body. But when the stream of growth and nutriment 

B's right will be opposite A's right ; the irepioSoi, and is the antecedent to aft. 

normal relation being inverted. When, Plato says, any sensations rush 

17. airov KVTOS] The soul is, as it upon the ireploSoi and carry the whole 
were, an envelope containing the Trepupopal. soul along with them, then the Treptodoi 
Stallbaum compares Laws 964 E, where seem to govern, though really they are 
the city is compared to a KVTOS. governed. That is to say, the motion of 

1 8. avrat Kparovptevai Kparciv 80- the circles which is imparted to them by 
KoCo-i] Stallbaum, after Proklos, refers the impulse of the alffOfoeis is mistaken 
O.VTO.I to alffOrjefis, interpreting 'they (the for their own proper motion: their report of 
sensations) seem to rule the soul, which the perception is received as true, though 
by rights rules them'. But this cannot be in fact it is untrustworthy. The notion 
admitted, because the important addition in airav KVTOS seems to be that when the 
' by rights ' is not in the Greek and cannot sensations are very overpowering, they 
be dispensed with. Moreover the sensa- give an impulse to the whole soul : there 
tions do really and not only in appearance is no hesitation nor conflict of opinion, 
govern the soul under these circumstances. Since then the soul ratifies without 
Martin's interpretation seems to me question the report of the senses, she 
unquestionably right, avrai refers to seems to be acting regularly and rightly 



[44 E 

e\arrov eiriy pevfta, iraXiv B at irepioBoi 7m/*/3av6fj,vai 
rr)v eavratv 68ov taxrt /cat KadicrTWVTai /*aXXoi> eTTiovros rou 
Xpovov, Tore 1787; 7ry?o<? TO Kara <j>v(nv IOVTOJV o-^f/yaa e/cao-rtoi/ rwy 
KVK\o)v at 7repi(f)0pai fcarevBvvofjievai, TO Te Odrepov /cat TO TauTov 

5 Trpocrayopevovaai KOST opdov, e/Ji<j)pova TOV e^ovra avrds yiyvo- 
fjLevov dirorekovffiv. av pev ovv 77 /cat ^vveTTiXa^^dv^raL Tt? 
opOrj rpo<f>rj TraiBevffeaJS, oXoX??po9 vyirfs re Traj/TeXcS?, n}v fif- C 
yiaTijv aTrotyisycbv vocrov, yiyverai, /caTa/ieX^cra? Be, %a)Kr)v rov 
/Stou Sicnropevdels %cotjv, aTeX?)? /cat dvor)TO<s et9 "AtSou irdXiv 

10 ep%Tcu. Tavra p,ev ovv fto-repd TTOTC yiyverai' trepl 8e rwv vvv 
Set Ste\6etv dtcpifiecrTepov, rd Be Trpo rovrcov Trepl 
Kara pepy T^9 yevea-ecos /cat irepl ^u^;^?, 81 a9 Te atVta9 
/cat Trpovoias yeyove Oewv, TOV /AaXt<7Ta et;oT09 a^Te^o/iej/ot9 
O0TO) /cat /caTa TayTa iropevofiivoi^ Biejfireov. D 

9 dvorjros : 

apprehending the phenomena, whereas 
really she is obeying an external impulse. 

i. IXaTTov firtn pv(*.a] That is to 
say, as the child grows older the im- 
perious necessities of nutrition become 
less predominant ; also the sensations 
from without grow less distracting. Ac- 
cordingly the intellect has freer play to 
exercise its functions. 

5. |uf>pova...Yi'yvo|i,cvov] Note that 
he is only put in the way to become 

7. o'p0r| Tpo<f>i] TrcuSevcrfios] These 
words must be taken together, the geni- 
tive depending upon rpo^r). Stallbaum, 
governing iraiSetiffeus by tTriXa/j.fidvrirai, 
wrongly understands 6p6j] rpo<prj to refer 
to the diminished influx of nutriment. 

oXoKX-qpos] This is a technical term 
of the Eleusinian ritual. Plato is fond 
of borrowing such terms : cf. Phae- 
drus 250 C 6\6ic\i)pa 5t Kal dw\d Kal 
drpe/j.7) Kal evdaifj.ova <f>dff/Mra fj.voijft.tvoi 
re Kal tiroirretiovrts iv avyrj Ka6ap$, 
Ka.0a.pol ovres Kal dffrifiavroi rovrov 5 

Tpoirov 5t5efffj.fvfi.^voi. See too Laws 759 
C. Similarly dreXrjj is a ritual term. It 
is also possible that in TTJC nfylarrjv diro- 

pr. m. S. 

(f>vy&v voffov we have an echo of the 
ejaculation of the initiates, tyvyov KaKov, 
evpov dfj-eivov : cf. Demosthenes de corona 
p. 312 259. 

8. X w ^n v ] Compare 87 r>, where 
it is said that if a disproportion exists 
between soul and body, the 8\ov ffiov 
is d^u pov rals ptyiffrais %vfj./j.rpiais. 

TOV PIOU SiairopevOds <>*] v] j3iov 
fi)= ' the conscious existence of his life- 
time', fw?) being a more subjective term 
than /3/os. Compare on the other hand 
Euripides Hercules furens 664 a Svvytveia 
5' dir\av av \ efye fwas fiiordv. 

10. v<rTpd iroT yfy VT( u] i.e. be- 
long to a later part of our exposition : 
the subject is in fact dealt with in chap- 
ters 4143. 

TWV vvv irpoTtOt'vTwv] I concur with 
Stallbaum in referring rd vvv wportBtvra 
to the inquiry into the operation of the 
several senses, while rd trpb rovrwv signifies 
the investigation vepl ffundruv /card fdpr) 
yevtaews Kal irepl ^vx^' 

13. TOV i*aXiora elKOTos] We are 
now fairly in the region of the physical, 
where we must be content with the 
' probable account '. 



flows in with smaller volume, and the revolutions calming down 
go their own way and become settled as time passes on, then 
the orbits are reduced to the form that belongs to the several 
circles in their natural motion, and declaring accurately the 
Other and the Same, they set their possessor in the way to 
become rational. And if any just discipline of education help 
this process, he becomes whole altogether without a blemish, 
having made his escape from the most grievous of plagues ; but 
if he neglect it, he passes the days of his life halt and maimed, 
and unhallowed and unreasonable he comes again to Hades. 
These things however belong to a later time : we must discuss 
more exactly the subject immediately before us. And as to 
the matters which are previous to this, concerning the genera- 
tion of the body in all its parts and concerning soul, and the 
reasons and designs of the gods whereby they have come into 
being, we must cling to the most probable theory, and by pro- 
ceeding in this way so give an account of all. 

forth into the darkness is quenched ; and 
when the eyelids are closed, the flow 
of it is turned inwards, and calming the 
motions that are within, it produces sleep, 
more or less dreamless according as the 
calm is complete. 

Then it is shown how images in mirrors 
arise through the reflection of the com- 
bined fires when they meet upon a smooth 
shining surface; how in plane mirrors 
right and left are reversed in the re- 
flection ; and how in a concave mirror, 
when it is held in one position, right and 
left are not transposed, but if it be held 
in another, the image is inverted. 

But we must remember that all these 
physical laws are but a means to an end ; 
we must learn to distinguish between 
spiritual causes, which are primary, and 
material causes, which are only sub- 
sidiary : and though both must be ex- 
plained, the first alone is the true object 
of the wise man's search. Now the true 
motive of the gods in bestowing sight 
upon man was the attainment of phi- 
losophy by him : for had we never seen 
the celestial motions and from them 

44 D 47 E, c. xvi. The two revolu- 
tions of the soul were enclosed in a sphe- 
rical case which we call the head : and 
all the rest of the body was framed that 
it might minister to the head, aiding 
it to move from place to place and pre- 
serving it from harm. And to man the 
gods assigned a forward progress as his 
most natural motion ; for this was more 
dignified than the contrary. To dis- 
tinguish front from rear they set the face 
with its organs of sense in one part of 
the head ; and this they made the for- 
ward and leading side. The first organs 
they fashioned therein were the eyes that 
lighten the body. Now vision comes to 
pass on this wise. From the eyes issues 
forth a stream of clear and subtle fire, 
of the same substance as the sunlight 
in the air; with which it mingles, and 
the two combined meet the fire pro- 
ceeding from the object which is in the 
line of vision ; and so the united fires, 
becoming one body, transmit the vibra- 
tions from the object to the eye. But 
at night, when there is no more light 
in the air, the visual fire on passing 

1 54 HA ATftNOS [44 D 

XVI. Ta9 fjikv Brj 6eia$ TrepioBovs Bvo oi/Vas TO TOU 7rai>To<? 
(r^fia dTTO/Mifjirjo'djjbevoi 7repi(f>epe<; bv et<? o~(f)aipoeiBe<; awpa eve- 
Bi]0~av, rovro o vvv Ke<f>a\r)v eirovo^d^op.ev, o Oeiorarov T etrrt 
Kal ru>v ev rjjjuv irdvrwv Beo~7rorovV a> teal irdv TO adofia TrapeBoaav 

5 VTTTjpecriav avrw %vva6polcravres Oeoi, Karavorjo-avres, ori iracrwv 
oa-ai Kivrja-eis eo-oivro /u,eTe%ot. 'iv ovv fir) KV\iv8ov/j,evov eVt 7^5 
vtyij re Kal ftdOij TravroSaTrd e^ovar}^ aTropol rd /j,ev i/Trepftaiveiv, E 
evdev 8e etcftaLvew, o^rjfju avrw TOVTO Kal einropiav eSovav' Wev 8rj 
ftrfKos TO o-w/ia ea^ev, efcrard re Kw\a Kal Ka/Airrd e<f>va-e rerrapa 

10 Oeov fjir)xavr)crafAVov iropeiav, ot? dvri\afA/3av6fj,evov Kal direpe&o- 
(tevov Bid Trdvrajv TOTTWV TropeveaOai Svvarov yeyove, rrjv rov 
Oetordrov Kal leptardrov <f>epov oircrjariv eTrdvooOev rjfjiwv. tr/ceX?; 45 A 
fjiev ovv %eipe<> re ravry Kal Bid ravra Trpocrecfrv Trdcri' rov 8' 
O7rio-0ev TO TrpocrOev riftiwrepov Kal dp^iKU>repov vo/J,iovre<t 6eol 

15 ravrrj TO TTO\I) T^? iropeia^ r^iiv eBocrav. eBei Brj BKOpta/jievov 
e%eiv Kal dvofjioiov rov crwfj,aro$ TO TrpoaOev dvOpwrrov. Bio Trpwrov 
fj,ev Trepl TO rfjs /ce^aX^? Kvros, virodevres avroae TO irpocrwjrov, 
opyava eveBrjaav rovrw Trda-rj rfj rfjs ->|rv^? Trpovola, Kal Bieragav B 
TO f^ere^ov JfaftpOvfaK TOUT' elvai TO Kara <f>vcnv rrpoaOev. rwv 

20 Be op<ydvo)v Trpwrov JMGV (fjaxr^opa ^vvereKrrjvavro op/iara, roiaBe 
evBrjo-avres airla. rov TTU/JO? oo-oz> T^ fjiev Kaieiv OVK eo-^e, TO Be 
a)9 r/fjiepov, OIKCIOV eKaarij^ T/yu-epa? 

10 iropeiav : iropela SZ. 18 rj omittit A. Ste'raf av TO /jLerexov ' dieragavro 

SZ. 22 post r)fj.{pas commate vulgo interpungitur. 

learnt number, philosophy could never aicrOdverat re p.d\iffra Kal at tpptves. rrjs 

have been ours. But now we are able ^VTOL <j>povri<ri.os otidertpy fj^recrnv, d\Xd 

to rule and correct the errant movements ir<u>T<av Tovrtuv 6 ^7/c^(/>a\os curios tffTiv. 

of our soul by contemplating the serene This view was afterwards upheld by 

unswerving revolutions of the skies. And Galen against the Peripatetics and Stoics, 

to the same end too they gave sound who made the heart the sole dpxri- With 

and music and harmony and rhythm, dfffirorovv compare a phrase in one of the 

that we might bring order from disorder Hippokratean epistles, m 824 Kiihn: 

in our souls. 5e<rir6r-r)v 0tf\a/ta diavoirjs KaXinrrovffiv 

i. r6 TOVI iravros rxTJ|ia a'7ro|ii|XTj(rd- tyK<j>a\ot>. 

luvoi] Cf. 73 c: see too 81 A, where 5. wcwwv] i.e. all the six, excluding 

the whole human frame is regarded as a rotation : cf. 43 B. 

microcosm working on the same princi- 10. iropefav] This reading has over- 

pies as the universe. whelming ms. support, and may very 

3. 8 vvv K<|>aXriv] Plato, in placing well signify ' as means of locomotion ' : 

the apx*l of consciousness in the head, there seems no sufficient ground for 

agrees with Hippokrates : cf. de morbo changing it to wopeia. 
sacro vol. I p. 614 Kuhn Siori r] Kapdli} 13. irpoortc^v] With this remarkable 

45 B] TIMAI02. 155 

XVI. Imitating the shape of the universe, which was sphe- 
rical, they confined the two divine revolutions in a globe-shaped 
body, the same that we now call the head, which is the divinest 
part of us and has dominion over all our members. To this the 
gods gave the whole body, when they had put it together, to 
minister to it, reflecting that it possessed all the motions that 
should be. In order then that it might not have to roll upon 
the earth, which has hills and hollows of all kinds, nor be at 
a loss to surmount the one and climb out of the other, they gave 
it the body for a conveyance and for ease of going : whence the 
body was endowed with length and grew four limbs that could 
be stretched and bent, which the god devised for it to go withal, 
and by means of which clinging and supporting itself it is 
enabled to pass through every place, bearing at the top of us 
the habitation of the most divine and sacred element. In this 
way then and for these reasons were legs and hands added to 
all mankind ; and the gods, deeming that the front was more 
honourable than the back and more fit to lead, made us to move 
for the most part in this direction. So it behoved man to have 
the front part distinguished and unlike the back. Therefore 
having set the face upon the globe of the head on that side, they 
attached to it organs for all the forethought of the soul, and 
they ordained that this which had the faculty of guidance should 
be by nature the front. And first of the organs they wrought light- 
giving eyes, which they fixed there on the plan I shall explain. 
Such sort of fire as had the property of yielding a gentle light 

use of the singular compare the still nose and mouth, on the same side of 

stronger case in Symposium 188 B ical the head, forming the face ; and this side 

yip rraxva-t xa.1 x<*^ a f at Kai tpvfflfiai K they called the front. 

ir\fove%ias nal dKOfffJ-las irepl a\\i)\a T&V 18. SUroljav TO |XT\ov] This read- 

TOIOUTUV jiyverai IpuriKuv. The con- ing is distinctly preferable to 8ieroam> 

struction is of course distinct from the ptroxov- For /u^roxoc if-ye/jcw/as must be 

so-called 'schema Pindaricum', in which the predicate: the meaning however 

the verb precedes its subject, and which plainly is that the gods, to distinguish 

is not so very uncommon in Attic writers. front from back, ordered that the face, 

15. $>i 8i]] Forward motion is more which held the leading position (because 

dignified than retrograde ; and man is it contained the opyava rfj rrjs ^vxys 

to have the more dignified. But to at- irpovoiq.), should be TO /card <t>v<nv irp6<r- 

tain this there must be something to dis- ffev. 

tinguish front from rear; therefore the 22. oUciov Kacrn]S TJji^pas <rw(xa] This 

gods placed the sensory organs, eyes punctuation is due to Madvig, who by 

1 5 6 


[45 B 

ylyvecrdat' TO yap eVTo? r)p,wv dBe\<f>ov ov TOVTOV irvp el\itcpive<; 
eTroiijo~av Bid T(5v ofji^aTcav pelv \elov ical TTVKVOV, o\ov ftev, fJ-a- 
\io~Ta Be TO /j.eo~ov vfjnri\'>jo~avT<i TWV o/iyu-aTtoy, So~Te TO fJiev c 
d\\o OQ-QV Tra^vTepov a-Teyeiv irav, TO TOIOVTOV Be p,6vov avTO 

5 KaOapov BirjOeiv. OTav ovv fJLedrj pep LVOV f) (^cS? Trepl TO T^? OT/re<u<? 
pevfjui, TOT' eKTrtTTTOv ojioiov 7rpo<? opoiov, vjj,7raye<> yevofievov, ev 
crtw/ia ol/ceiQ)dev o~vveo~Tr) tcaTa TT/V TWV o^p>aT(av evdvwpiav, oirrjTrep 
av avTepelBrj TO irpoo'irlirTov evBodev TT^O? o TU>V ea> o'vveTreo'ev. 
ofioioTraOes Brj oY 6/j,oioTr)Ta irdv yevoaevov, OTOV Te av avTO TTOTC 

10 e(pdTTTr)Tai Kal o av d'XXo eicelvov, TOVTMV TCZ? tcivijo~ei<i BiaBiBov D 

T) Brj opdv (frauev. d7re\06vTO<; Be elf VVKTU TOV vyyevov<; irvpos 
dTroTeT/ArjTai' Trpos yap dv6fj,oiov eiov dXkoiovTai T avTO Kal 
tcaTao-ftevvvTat, ^vjMJjves ovtceTt Tc3 7r\r)crlov dept yiyvofjievov, a.T 

7 orjjirep av: av omittit A. 9 orou re dv : OTOV re lav A. 

merely expunging a comma has restored 
sense to the passage. Ordinarily a comma 
is placed after i^fyas, leaving us to face 
the inconvenient problem, how could the 
gods make into body that which was 
body already? For Martin's attempt to 
specialise the use of ffu^a in the sense of 
' definitely formed matter ' is hopeless. 
Eschewing the comma however, we get 
quite the right sense they made it into a 
substance similar to tha' daylight, which 
is a subtle fire pervading the atmosphere. 
Thus too the yap immediately following, 
to which Stallbaum takes exception, is 
justified ; it introduces the explanation 
how the gods made the fire within us 
similar to the fire without. There is an 
obvious play between tjfj.epov yutpas. 
For Plato's etymology of -fi^pa. see Craty- 
lus 418 C. 

4. T& TOIOVTOV] sc. ri> etXiKpivis Kal 
\eioi> Kal irvKvbv* 

6. iv <rw|ia olKiw9^v] That is to say, 
wherever the eye is directed, the stream 
of fire from the eye and the fire in the 
atmosphere, which is of one and the same 
substance with it, combine and form a 
ray of homogeneous fire all along the 
line of vision. 

10. TOVTUV TO.S Kivt]cris 8ia8i86v] Pla- 
to's theory may thus be briefly explained. 
There are three fires concerned : the fire 
that streams from the eye, the fire of day- 
light in the air, and the fire in the object 
seen, which is the cause of its visibility. 
The first two are absolutely homogeneous 
one with the other and combine into a 
perfectly uniform substance. This sub- 
stance, on meeting the rays from the 
object, receives their vibrations and trans- 
mits them to the eye, whence they are 
delivered to the seat of consciousness, at 
which point of the process perception 
takes place. The problem with which 
Plato has to deal is, how is action at a 
distance effected? This he ingeniously at- 
tempts to explain by the hypothesis of an 
extension of the substance of the perci- 
pient in the direction of the object : for 
the tyews peO/xa is just as much part of 
ourselves as the brain or hand : this is 
clear from 64 D. If this passage be com- 
pared with the statements in Theaetetus 
156 A foil, or 182 A, it will be seen that 
the physical theory of the Timaeus fits in 
perfectly well with the metaphysical doc- 
trine of perception in the Theaetetus. 

It is plain too that Plato's theory is 



but not of burning, they contrived to form into a substance akin 
to the light of every day. The fire within us, which is akin to 
the daylight, they made to flow pure smooth and dense through 
the eyes, having made close the whole fabric of the eyes and 
especially the pupils, so that they kept back all that was coarser 
and suffered only this to filter through unmixed and pure. 
Whenever then there is daylight surrounding the current of 
vision, then this issues forth as like into like, and coalescing with 
the light is formed into one uniform substance in the direct line 
of vision, wherever the stream issuing from within strikes upon 
some external object that falls in its way. So the whole from 
its uniformity becomes sympathetic ; and whenever it comes in 
contact with anything else, or anything with it, it passes on the 
motions thereof over the whole body until they reach the soul, 
and thus causes that sensation which we call seeing. But when 
its kindred fire departs into night, the visual current is cut off: 
for issuing into an alien element it is itself changed and quenched, 
having no longer a common nature with the surrounding air, 

peculiar to himself and quite diverse from 
the Empedoklean (or Demokritean) doc- 
trine of effluences, with which Stallbaum 
confuses it ; although the two theories 
have some points in common, as appears 
from the statement of Aristotle de sensti 
437 b ii foil. Empedokles, as Aristotle 
informs us, wavered in his explanation, 
sometimes adopting the airoppoal afore- 
said, sometimes comparing the eye to 
a lantern, sending forth its visual ray 
through the humours and membranes 
which correspond to the frame of the 
lantern. But as propounded in the pas- 
sage quoted by Aristotle (302 310 Kars- 
ten), this notion amounts merely to a 
metaphor or analogy and is not worked 
up into a physical theory : it agrees how- 
ever with Plato in taking fire for the 
active force of the eye. The doctrine of 
effluences from the object corresponding 
to iropoi in the percipient is attributed to 
Empedokles in Meno 76 c : see too Ari- 
stotle de gen. et corr. I viii y." 35 foil. 
Plato himself assumes an effluence of rays 

from the object, but this has little resem- 
blance to the Empedoklean diroppoai. 
An exposition of the peculiar theory of 
Demokritos will be found in Theophrastos 
de sensu 49 foil. Aristotle's theory of 
vision is expounded in de anima II vii and 
de sensu ii, iii. 

n. fw'xpt T1 is ^X^s] See note on 
43 c. 

12. $ 8ij] 'whereby' we see. The 
physical process is the soul's instrument : 
cf. Theaetetus \ 84 c. 

14. Karao-p^vwrai] Plato explains quite 
clearly what he means by ' extinguished '. 
The visual fire, issuing into air destitute 
of light, finds no kindred substance with 
which to coalesce : it is thus modified, 
and losing its proper nature becomes un- 
able to carry on the process of vision. 
Aristotle however, catching at the word 
Ka.TO.ff^lvvvra.1, asks ris yap diro<r)3eiJts 0w- 
TOS iffriv ; ff^vvvrai yap fj vyp<p T) \jswxj><$ 
rb KO.\ ripov, olov 5o*te? TO T' iv TO?J 
dvOpaK&Sefftv elvat irvp Kai rj <p\6, wi> T< 
<f>url ovStrepov Qalvtrcu vtrap^ov : . It is 

I 5 8 


[45 D 

OVK e'yovrt. rraverat re ovv opwv, eri re erraywyov vrrvov 
a-Qjrrjpiai' yap r)v oi 6eol rr)<; o^/re&>9 e^rj^avrja-avro, rrjv 
rwv j3\e<f>dp(i)v (frvcnv, orav ravra f^vjAfAvcrrj, tcaOeipyvvat rr)v E 
TOU rrvpos evrof Biivapiv, rj Be Bia%ei re teal 6/j,a\vvei T9 evro? 

5 (civr/vets, 6/j,a\vv0eicr(av Be rjav^ia yvyverai, <yevofjt,evr)s Be rro\\r)<j 
[lev r)<rvyia<s ftpayvoveipos vrrvof e^rrircret,, Kara\ei<^)deLau>v Be 
rivcov Kivrjcrewv fiet^ovwv, olai teal ev otbt? av rorrois \eirra)vrai, 4G A 
TotaOra /cal roo-avra rrapea-^ovro d(f)OfjLoia)9evra evros e&> re 
eyepOeiGiv drro^vrj^ovevofjieva (fravrda-fjuara. TO Be rrepl rrjv r(5v 

10 Karorrrpwv el8(o\orroi,iav, /cal rrdvra ocra efi(j>avr} teal Xeta, KariBeiv 
ovBev eri r ^a\err6v. e/c 7^^ T^9 evrcs eT09 re rov rrvpos etcarepov 
KOivwvias d\\r)\oi<$, evos re av rrepl rrjv \ei6rrjra etcdarore ye- 
vo/jievov /cal rroX\,a^ fierappvO/jua-Qevros, rrdvra rd roiavra ej~ B 
dvdyfcr)<; /j,<f>aiverat,, rov rrepl TO TTpoa-forrov Trvpos TW rrepl rrjv 

15 O^ITIV rrvpl rrepl TO \elov Kal \afjt,rrpov %vp,rr 0701)9 yiyvofjievov. 
Beid Be (fravrd^erai rd dpicrrepd, ori Tot9 evavriois fj-epetri rrjs 

1 6 Kara post <f>avrderai habet A. 

lates ' images semblables a des objets soit 
interieurs, soit exterieurs '. But what can 
be meant by ' objets interieurs ' ? I had 
thought of substituting QwOev for w re, 
'copied within from without': in which 
case eytpOeial r' must be read. But 
though this gives a good sense, it over- 
throws the balance of the sentence. And 
the text may, I think, be explained as it 
stands : the images are copied within 
that is, in the dream-world, and recalled 
to mind without that is, when we have 
emerged from the dream-world. For Ari- 
stotle's theory of dreams see the treatise 
irepl (vvirvl<i>i>. 

it. IK -yap Tf\s ivr6<$] Plato proceeds 
to explain the phenomena of reflection in 
mirrors. The rays from the object reflected 
are arrested by the smooth shining sur- 
face of the mirror, which they cannot 
penetrate : the combined <tyews pevfw. 
and /j.e0rjfj.fpivbv <j>ws are arrested on the 
same surface and thus come into conjunc- 
tion with the rays from the object. Thus 
the mirror is the cause of contact be- 
tween the fire of the subject and the fire 
of the object, and so an indirect vision is 

I Sirvov ylyverat : ytyverai tiirvov S. 

impossible to exonerate criticism of this 
kind from the charge of bvopAruv Or/pev- 
<rts. The reference in de anima in xii 
435 a 5 i s apparently to Empedokles, not 
to Plato. 

4. q 8i Sia\ct] sc. 17 TOU trvpbs 86- 
va/, not, as Stallbaum has it, y ru>v 
f)\t(j)<ipuv (pfois : to say nothing of the 
sense, the 17 3 is sufficient to show that 
the subject of Siaxei is different from that 
of Kadfipyvvffi. Plato's view is that when 
the eyes are closed, the visual stream, un- 
able to find an outlet, is directed inwards, 
and the smooth and subtle flow of fire 
mollifies and calms all the motions within, 
thus inducing sleep. 

8. d.4>ojioLco0VTa ivros] Dreams are 
the result of motions which are not tho- 
roughly calmed down, whereby semblances 
of external things are presented to the 
mind from within : the Kivrjffis correspond- 
ing to any particular external impression 
producing a likeness of that impression 
in the sleeping consciousness. The sense 
is plain enough ; but some difficulty at- 
taches to the words tivfc (u re. Martin, 
construing them with a<pop.oiu0evra, trans- 




which has in it no fire. Therefore it ceases from seeing and 
moreover becomes an allurement to sleep. For the gods had 
devised as a safeguard of the sight the structure of the eyelids ; 
and when these are closed, they shut up the force of fire within ; 
and this smoothes and calms the motions within ; and when 
these are calmed, quiet ensues. And if the quiet is profound, 
sleep with few dreams falls on us ; but if some of the stronger 
motions are left, according to their nature and the places where 
they remain, they engender visions corresponding in kind and in 
number; which are images within us, and when we awake are 
remembered as outside us. Now the explanation of reflections 
in mirrors and all bright smooth surfaces is no longer hard to 
discern. For because of the communion of the internal and 
external fire, which again is united on the smooth surface and in 
manifold ways deflected, all these reflections take place ; the fire 
that belongs to the face coalescing with the fire of the visual 
current upon the surface of the smooth bright object. And left 
appears right and right left, because mutually opposite particles 

effected, rov irvpbs eKartpov signifies not 
the visual stream and the daylight, but 
the visual stream (combined with the 
daylight) and the rays from the object. 
These two fires combine upon the surface 
of the mirror (^/cros), and the /civf/crtis of 
this combination are transmitted along 
the visual stream and impressed upon the 
retina (^CTOS). The foregoing interpreta- 
tion gives the best meaning I can put 
upon the curious phrase rfjs tvrbs ticros 
re Koivbivlas, unless we may suppose that 
Plato rather loosely said ' the internal 
and external combination of the two fires' 
for ' the combination of the internal and 
external fires'. But I have strong sus- 
picions that &TOS {KTOS re is a marginal 
gloss upon eKartpov. Seneca natur. quaest. 
I v i clearly expresses the distinctive cha- 
racteristic of Plato's theory of reflections: 
'de speculis duae opiniones sunt ; alii 
enim in illis simulacra cerni putant, id est 
corporum nostrorum figuras a nostris cor- 
poribus emissas ac separatas, alii non 
imagines in specula, scd ifsa adspici cor- 

pora, retorta oculorum acie et in sc rursus 
reflcxa '. The italicised words express 
Plato's opinion. iroXXaxfj fteTappvO/JUff- 
Otvros refers, I conceive, to the various 
angles at which the rays are reflected, 
corresponding to the different angles of 

14. ji<f>avT(u] 'are reflected', tf*.- 
<paive<r0ai is the technical term. The 
word yu0acris, 'reflection', does not occur 
in Plato but is frequent in Aristotle and 

TOV irpl ri -7rp6(rwirov 7rvp6s] i.e. 
the fire belonging to the" face, which is 
the object reflected. We must suppose 
the case of a person looking at his own 
face in a mirror : what happens is that 
the ray from the face, rb irepl TO wpoffu- 
irov, is checked on the surface of the 
mirror and is then amalgamated with the 
visual stream, TO irtpl TTJP fyiv, which 
meets it at that spot. Plato's theory of 
course applies to all reflections, although 
in this sentence he is speaking as of a 
particular case. 


[46 B 

cn^reft)? Trepl rdvavria pep?) yiyverai eVae^?) Trapd TO 
eOo? T7/9 TrpO(T/3o\r}<?' Be^id 8e rd Se^id Kal ra dpurrepa dpurrepd 
TovvavTiov, orav fjLra f rrea"r} avfjL7rijyvv/j,vov (a crvfjiTnjjvvrai ^xw?' 
TOVTO 8e, orav 77 rcav KaroTrrpwv XeiorT??, evOev teal evdev v-^rrj C 
5 \aj3ov<ra, TO Be^ibv et? TO dpt(TTpbv fiepos dirtacrr) T^? otyews /cat 

6a.TpOV 67Tfc 0CLTpOV. KttTO, B TO fifJKOS (TTpa<f)eV TOV TTpOCTWTTOV 

TavTov TOVTO vTTTtov eTroirjcre irav (paivecrOai, TO tcaTW Trpos TO avco 

T^9 avyrj^ TO T OVdD TTpOS TO KflTCO TToXlV aTTWCraV. 

TaOr' ovv TrdvTa e&Tt TOOV ^vvaiTiwv, ol? ^6o<> v7rr)pTOv<rt 
10 xprJTai TT/V TOV dpi<rTov Kara TO SWCLTOV ISeav aTTOTeXdSv' So^d- 
erat Se VTTO TWV 7r\eicrTcov ov vvaiTia a\\' aiTta elvai TOOV irav- D 
TO>V, ^rv^ovTa ical Oep/naivovTa TrrjyvvvTa re teal Bia^eovTa KOI ova 
ToiavTa aTrepya^o/jLeva' \6jov Be ovSeva ov8e vovv et<? ovSev SvvaTa 
ecrrt. TWV yap OVTWV cS vovv fiovw KTaaQai Trpoa-rjicei, \KTeov 

i. irtpl rdvavrfa l^pi]] Plato's 
meaning will be readily understood by 
means of a diagram, which, together with 
the explanation, is borrowed from 

AB is a line in the mirror where it is 
cut by a plane which also passes through 
the eye of the observer and through the 
object reflected. CD is the line where 
the plane cuts the eye, EF the line where 
it cuts the object. DH, CG are two rays 
of the visual fire impinging upon the 
mirror in the points G, ff: EG, FH are 
two rays from the objects impinging upon 
the mirror and meeting Dff, CG in the 

same two points. Then it will be seen 
that the ray Dff, which proceeds from 
the right side of the eye, meets the ray 
FH, proceeding from the right side of the 
object : therefore (the angle of reflection 
being equal to the angle of incidence) 
the ray from F is reflected along HD 
to the right side of the eye. Similarly 

the ray EG, issuing from the left of the 
object, is reflected along GC to the left 
side of the eye. This is a reversal of 
what happens in the case of direct 
vision (irapii rb KaOevrbs tOos rrjs irpoa- 
jSoX^j). For if A and B look each other 
in the face, A's right eye will be opposite 
JS's left, and so forth : but if A look at his 
own face in the glass, the eye in the 
reflection, which should be the left 
relatively to the reflection, will be the 
reflection of the right eye : for if A close 
his right eye, the eye in the mirror 
opposite his right will be closed. Plato's 
theory then is designed to explain why it 
is that in a reflection the right side of the 
visual current comes in contact with the 
rays from the right side of the object, 
whereas in direct vision it meets the rays 
from the left of the object. Compare 
Sophist 266 C SiirXovv 8 rjvlK S.v 0tDs 
olKfUv re ical d\\6rpiov irepl TO. \afj.irpa. 
ical \e?a e/s / fweXWy TT?J tfj.irpoff6ei> 
etdiBvlas tf^ews ^vavrLav atcrOrjffiv irap^xof 
etdos aTrepydfrrai. 

4. v0cv KCU fv0v \i\\n] Xa.pox/0-a] 
i.e. a concave mirror. Plato conceives 
the reversal of the phenomena of reflection 
as appearing in a plane mirror to be due 
to the concavity deflecting the rays at the 



of the visual current and of the object seen come into contact, 
contrary to the wonted mode of collision. On the other hand right 
appears as right and left as left, when in the act of combination 
with that wherewith it combines the ray changes sides. This 
happens when the smooth surface of the mirror is curved up- 
wards on each side and so throws the right portion of the visual 
current to the left side and the ccfoiverse. But if it is turned 
lengthwise to the face, it makes this same reflection appear 
completely upside down, thrusting the lower portion of the ray 
to the upper end and the upper to the lower. 

All these things are among the secondary causes which God 
uses to serve him in carrying out the idea of the best so far 
as is possible. But the multitude regard them not as secondary 
but as primary causes, which act by cooling and heating, con- 
densing and rarefying, and all such processes. Yet they are 
incapable of all reason or thought for any purpose. For the 
only existing thing to which belongs the possession of reason 

moment of impact. In the case of a con- 
cave mirror the section AB would be 
a curved line instead of straight ; and 
thereby a ray from the right side, just at 
the moment of impact, while it is in act 
of amalgamating with the ray from the 
object, is shifted to the left side, and vice 
versa- It must be remembered that the 
concave mirrors of which Plato speaks 
are not of the sort with which we are 
most familiar, namely hemispherical 
mirrors : they are hemicylindrical : there- 
fore when the mirror is held laterally, so 
that the curvature is from right to left, 
the position of right and left as compared 
with a reflection in a plane mirror is 
inverted ; if it is held vertically (Kara. 
pfJKos <TTpa<f>ei> TOV irpocrwirov), so that the 
curvature is from top to bottom, the 
reflection is upside down. See Munro's 
note on Lucretius iv 317. If the mirror 
were hemispherical, or one which is 
concave all round from centre to circum- 
ference, both right and left and top and 
bottom would be inverted, as may be 
seen by simply looking into the bowl of 

P. T. 

a silver spoon. This case is not noticed 
by Plato, nor by Lucretius /. /. Martin 
gives a mathematical explanation of the 

9. TWV jjvvaiTCwv] Plato now pro- 
ceeds to guard against being supposed to 
mean that the physical principles which 
he has just laid down are the real cause : 
they are merely the means through which 
the true cause works, viz., poCs operating 
^?ri rb (3\Tiffrov. Compare Phaedo 99 B. 
The whole of this latter part of the 
chapter contains a polemic partly against 
Anaxagoras, partly against Demokritos. 
Anaxagoras did indeed postulate vovt 
as his prime force, but he used it simply 
as a mechanical agent, without attributing 
to it a conscious effort to produce the best 
result. Demokritos conceives a blind 
unconscious force, avdyKi), to be the 
motive power of the universe. Thus 
whereas the opposition between Demo- 
kritos and Plato is fundamental and 
essential, Plato's controversy with Anaxa- 
goras is due rather to inconsequence or 
incompleteness on the part of the latter. 


1 62 HAATHNOS [46 u 

' TOVTO Be dopaTOV, Trvp Be real vBcop teal 777 ical dr)p o~(o- 
fiara irdvra oparci yeyove' TOV Be vov Kal e-Trta-TT;/^? epaa-rrjv 
dvaytcrj ra? T^? fjb<f>povo<; tfrvcrews atrta? irpwra^ fj.TaBia>Kiv, ovai 
Be VTT d\\cov fjuev KivovfjLevwv, erepa Be eg dvdyKijs KIVOVVTWV E 

5 ytyvovTai, BevTepas. Troirjreov Brj Kara ravra Kal rjplv' \eicrea 
fj,ev dfj,(f>6repa rd TWV alriwv <yevr), %(apl<? Be ocrat ftera vov fca\(av 
Kal dyaOwv Srjfjiiovpyol Kal ocrat povwOeltrai <f>povr)(Ta)<; TO 
araKTOv eKaa-rore e^epjd^ovrai. rd fj,ev ovv rwv ofijjbdrwv 
airia irpos TO e%iv rrjv Bvvafiiv rjv vvv ei\r}^ev elpr)<r0co' TO Be 

10 fieytffTov avTwv et? (ti<f)\eiav epyov, oY o ^609 avff yjuv BeBwprjrai, 47 A 
TOVTO prjTeov. o^is Brj Kara TOV e/jiov \6yov aiTia T^? fieyi- 
eJ^eXeta? yeyovev tffuv, OTI TWV vvv \6ycov vrepl TOV TTCH/TO? 
\eyofjLevwv ovBels dv TTOTC eppijOr) fiiJTe do~Tpa piJTe TJ\LOV /^re 
ovpavov IBovTcov' vvv B* qpepa Te Kal vvg o<f>6elo-at /J,rjve<; re Kal 

15 eviavTWv TrepioBoi fie/Jiij^dv'rjvTai pev dptOpov, %p6vov Be evvotav 
Trepl T T^9 TOU Tra^TO? </>vo-eo)9 r)Tr)o~iv eBoo-av' eg d>v eTropiffd^eOa 
(f)i\oo~o(j>ia<i 76^09, ov ftel^ov dyaOov OVT rf\6ev ovre %!;ei> TTOT TCO B 
6vr)T(p yevei BcapijOev CK dewv. Xeya> Brj TOVTO ofifjidTwv fieyio-TOV 
dryaOov' TaXXa Be, oo~a e\aTTo>, TL dv vuvolftev', &v 6 firj <f>i\6o~o(f)o<> 

4 a\\uv fj.ev : aXX?}Xa>j> A. g fyeiv : o 

3. rds TTJS ?(Jt}>povos 4>v<rews airos] the following chapter. Plato does not 

That is to say the final causes, the design mean that there is a blind force existing 

of Intelligence, as distinguished from the in nature, acting at random and producing 

physical means used to carry out the hap-hazard effects. Such a conception is 

design. Thus in the case of vision the totally foreign to his system, in which the 

Setirepai alrtai are the physical laws which one cause, the one dpx 7 ? Kivnffetas, is 

Plato has set forth, the irpwrri alrla is ^vx^~ What he does mean is this. It 

what he is presently about to state. Both is idle to treat the physical forces of 

classes of cause are to be investigated by nature as causes, since in themselves they 

the lover of truth, but the secondary only have no intelligence or purpose. They 

for the sake of the primary : compare are indeed designed and set in motion by 

68 E. Intelligence for the best ends; but the 

6<rai 8i vir' aXXwv Kivovp^vcav] KIVOV- conditions of their action may be such 

fj^vuv, Kivotivruv are partitive genitives that sometimes their immediate results 

'such as are among things which are are not good, and they have no power in 

moved by others'. ^ dvAyK-qs, i.e. with- themselves to avoid such results; they 

out an intelligent purpose (since these must operate inevitably according to the 

have \6yov otiStva otiSt vovv els law of their nature. The point is well 

), and not of their own free will. put by Mr D. D. Heath in an able essay 

7. o<rai p.ovio0ierai <j>povri crews] The in the Journal of Philology, vol. vii p. 

nature of the two causes is dealt with in in, where he is dealing with Aristotle's 

the note on avdyicr) at the beginning of views of causation. 'Any agent', he 

47 B] TIMAI02. 163 

we must affirm to be soul : and this is invisible, whereas fire 
and water and air and earth are all visible creations. Now 
the lover of reason and knowledge must first seek for the 
causes which belong to the rational order ; and only in the 
second place those which belong to the class of things which 
are moved by others and move others in turn. This then is 
what we must also do : we must declare both classes of causes, 
distinguishing between those which with the aid of reason are 
the creators of fair things and good, and those which being 
destitute of reason produce from time to time chance effects 
without design. Enough then of the auxiliary causes which 
combine in giving the eyes the power they now possess ; but 
the great result, for the sake of which God bestowed them on 
us, must be our next theme. Sight, according to my judgment, 
has been the cause of the greatest blessing to us, inasmuch 
as of our present discourse concerning the universe not one 
word would have been uttered had we never seen the stars and 
the sun and the heavens. But now day and night, being seen 
of us, and months and the revolution of the years have created 
number, and they gave us the notion of time and the power of 
searching into the nature of the All ; whence we have derived 
philosophy, than which no greater good has come neither shall 
come hereafter as the gift of heaven to mortal man. This I 
declare to be the chiefest blessing due to the eyes : on the rest 
that are meaner why should we descant ? let him who loves not 

says, 'natural or artificial, may produce sequence of the 'casual relation' which is 

effects which do not naturally or necessarily thus established between it and the coal, 

flow from those qualities which give it its But this is in complete conformity with 

name or constitute its kind, but which the natural laws which arise solely from 

result from properties common to it and the evolution of voh. 

other kinds, or from circumstances which 16. l| <3v erropurdiwOa] The true 

bring it into casual relation with the final cause of sight then is the attainment 

thing it acts upon : a coal may break of philosophy, which is the ultimate result 

yovir head as well as warm you '. See of the knowledge of number, acquired by 

Aristotle physica n iv i95 b 31 foil. In observation of the celestial bodies. The 

this sense only is an effect produced which sciences of number and astronomy were 

is TO Tvxbv O.TO.KTOV. The falling of the for Plato a propaedeutic to philosophy, 

coal is the natural effect of its gravity, a as we learn from Republic 525 A foil. : 

property bestowed upon it by vovs : and and it is well known that he regarded 

if your head happens to be in the line of geometry as an indispensable part of a 

the coal's descent, it is broken in con- liberal education. 

II 2 

1 64 ITAATHNOS [47 B 

av 0pr)voi fjidr'rjv. d\\d rovrov 

Trap" rjpwv avrrj eVt ravra atria, 0eov r^iiv dvevpelv 
T oifnv, iva ra<? ev ovpavw Karioovres TOV vov -rrepioSovs 
jj,e0a eirl rd<; Trept<f)0pd<; ra? rfjs Trap' rjpJiv Stavor/o-eax;, tfvyyeveis 
5 eKelvai? ovtras, drapaKroi? rerapaypevas, etcfjiaOovres &e Kal \o- C 
yL<7fJLwv Kara <$>V<TIV op06rrjro<j fjieracr^ovre 1 ;, fja^ovfievoi rax TOV 
0eov Trdi/TW? aTrXavet? oixra^, ra? ev rj^ilv TreTrXav^/jieva^ Karaffrv)- 
(rai^eOa. <^covr)<; re 8ij Kal dtcorj<; Trepi TraXtv 6 avro? Xo^o?, ejn 
ravra rwv avr&v Gveica Trapd 6ewv BeScaprjaOai. \6yos re yap eV 
10 avrd ravra reraKrai, rrjv iLe<ylcrTi]v v/A(3a\\6[j,Vo<> ei9 avra 
fiolpav, cxrov T' av fj.ov<riicf)<; (jxavfj %pij<Ti,/jiov [77/^09 dicoijv], eveica 

earl Sodev' r) Se dp/novla, ^vyyevelf e^ova'a <f>opd<; rat? eV D 
fyv'xfis TrepioSois, rc3 perd vov Trpoo-^pw^evw Moi^o-at? 
OVK <f> TjSovrjv a\oyov, KaOaTrep vvv elvat SOKGI xprjo'ifios, a\\ 
15 7rl rrjv yeyovviav ev r^/jfiv dvdp^oo~rov -^rtn^? irepioBov et? icara- 
Kocr/j,r}criv Kal <TVfj,<f>(oviav eavrf) o'v^a^o^ VTTO MoycreSy SeSorai' 
Kal pv0fjU)<i av Bid rr/v dperpov ev rj^iiv Kal ftaptrav ejnSed yiyvo- E 
ev TO?? 7rXet(rTO49 e^iv eiriKOVpos 7rl ravrd VTTO r<av avrwv 

20 XVII. Ta fjiev ovv jrape\ i rfkv66ra rwv elptjfAevav 7r\r)v {3pa- 

i rofrrov : TOVTO SZ. 2 avrr) iirl ravra air la : avrfj eirl ravry alrlq. S. 

2 avevptlv : eiipeiv A. 10 rty ante /j-fylffryv omittunt SZ. u <f>uvy: <J>uvr) 

A pr. m. <j><av9)S HSZ. mox inclusi Trpds ancnqv. 18 ^Tri ravra : tiri ravra Z. 

i. Op^voi JXCITTJV] This, as Lindau case to such /UOIXTIKIJ as consists of musical 

and Stallbaum have pointed out, is an and vocal sounds, which he says were 

echo of Euripides Phoenissae 1762 dXXA given us for the sake of harmony. The 

yap rl ravra Opijvw Kal /jLarrjv ddtipopai ; high educational value which Plato set 

3. tva ras Iv ovpavw] Compare upon music and harmony is again and 

Republic 500 C, where we read of the again emphasised in his writings : see for 

philosophers els reray^va drra Kal Kard. instance Republic 401 D, Laws 666 D. 

Tairri del fyovra bp&vras Kal Oeufdvovs Stallbaum's reading and punctuation are 

o#r dSiKovvra ovr' a3iKovfj.eva vir d\- alike unsatisfactory. The words TT/OOS 

\ifl\uv, /c6(T/-t(jj 8^ irdvra Kal Kark \6yov aKoyv appear to me superfluous and un- 

fxovra, ravra /j.ijj.e'iffOa.i re Kal ort fiaXurra meaning : I conceive them to have been 

axf>of*.oiovffdai. a marginal gloss on <puvrj. 

n. &rov T* a.v (J.OVO-IKTJS] The reading 12. |vvYVis J:\owa <j>opds] Thus 

of the text, although I cannot consider it is brought out the significance of the 

altogether satisfactory, affords a fairly harmonic ratios in 35 B: the laws of 

good sense, ^owud] is a comprehensive harmony and the laws of being are the 

term, including much more than 'music' same ; the former being just one special 

in the modern sense. Plato is therefore aspect of the latter. 
limiting the signification in the present 47 E 48 E, c. xvii. Hitherto our dis- 

E] TIMAIOS. 165 

wisdom, if he be blinded of these, lament with idle moan. But 
on our part let this be affirmed to be the cause of vision, for 
these ends : God discovered and bestowed sight upon us in 
order that we might observe the orbits of reason which are 
in heaven and make use of them for the revolutions of thought 
in our own souls, which are akin to them, the troubled to the 
serene; and that learning them and acquiring natural truth 
of reasoning we might imitate the divine movements that are 
ever unerring and bring into order those within us which are 
all astray. And of sound and hearing again the same account 
must be given : to the same ends and with the same intent 
they have been bestowed on us by the gods. For not only 
has speech been appointed for this same purpose, whereto it 
contributes the largest share, but all such music as is expressed 
in sound has been granted, for the sake of harmony : and 
harmony, having her motions akin to the revolutions in our 
own souls, has been bestowed by the Muses on him who with 
reason seeks their help, not for any senseless pleasure, such 
as is now supposed to be its chiefest use, but as an ally against 
the discord which has grown up in the revolution of our soul, 
to bring her into order and into unison with herself: and 
rhythm too, because our habit of mind is mostly so faulty 
of measure and lacking in grace, is a succour bestowed on us 
by the same givers for the same ends. 

XVII. Now in our foregoing discourse, with few exceptions, 

course has been entirely or mainly con- blessing let us set forth on a new and 
cerned with the works of Intelligence ; strange journey of discovery, 
but now we must likewise take account 20. TO, p,iv ovv irapcXrjXvOoTa] Up 
of the operations of Necessity. For all to this point Plato has been treating of 
the fabric of this universe is the effect of the general design and plan of creation, 
Intelligence acting upon Necessity and TT\TJV Ppaxtwv, with some small excep- 
influencing it to produce the best possible tions, e.g. the account of the ffv/j-nerairta 
result. Therefore in our account of crea- which contribute to the process of vision, 
tion we must find room for the Errant The inquiry into the effects of necessity, 
Cause. And first we must set forth the to which a great part of the remainder 
origin of fire and the other elements, of the dialogue is devoted, consists of 
which no man has yet declared. But in physical and physiological speculations 
dealing with things material we cannot concerning the various properties and 
find any infallible first principle where- forms of matter and their interaction 
upon to base our discourse ; we must be one on another. This inquiry is how- 
content, as we have always said, with the ever introduced by a metaphysical theory 
probable account. And so with heaven's of the first importance, without which it 

1 66 


[47 E 

CTTtBeBeiKTai TO, Bid vov BeSijfjiiovpyrjpeva' Sei Be Kal rd Si 
yiyvofieva rc3 \o<y&) TrapaOeffOai. f^efiiyf^evfj yap ovv r) 

TOvBe TOV KOGflOV 761/6(769 % dvdyKIJS T6 KOI VOV (TVCTrdo'eW^ JV- 48 A 

vr)6r)' vov Be avary/cys dp^ovro^ T&> Treideiv avrrjv rv yiyvoftevwv 
5 rd TrXetcrra eVi TO /3e\Ti(TTOv dyeiv, ravrrj Kara ravrd re oY 
dvdyKtj 1 ; rjTTWpevr)*; VTTO ireiOovs e(ji<j)povo<; ovra> tear dp%ds gvvi- 
crraro roBe TO irdv. ei ri<s ovv 77 yeyove Kara ravra 6W&)<? epei, 
Kal TO T??? 7r\az>&>/4eV79 elSo? atria?, 77 <f>ept,v 7re<j)VKV, 

else would vovs be at variance with it- 
self. Therefore all nature's forces must 
follow their proper impulse according to 
the conditions in which they are for the 
time being : if fire and a hayrick come in 
collision, it is dvdyicr) that the rick be 
burnt, though fire was not designed to 
burn ricks. But this implies no origi- 
nating power in matter; it means only 
that voOs, having once evolved itself in the 
pluralised form, the laws of its existence 
in that form are constant. Material na- 
ture is a machine wound up to go of 
itself; vovs is not for ever checking or 
correcting its action in detail see Laws 
903 B foil. But there is something more 
to be said. It is a necessary law for vovs 
to exist in the form of material nature : 
and within this sphere we see that things 
do not always work, at any rate imme- 
diately, M rb /3t\TurToi>. It was im- 
possible, we must suppose, for vovs to 
assume the form of a multitude of phy- 
sical forces, all in themselves and in 
their design beneficent, which should 
not, amid the infinite complexity of 
their interaction, inevitably under some 
conditions produce effects which are not 
beneficent. This necessity and this im- 
possibility constitute dvdyKr]. It is then 
in the final analysis the law by which 
vovs necessarily has a mode of existence 
to which imperfection attaches: and the 
very constancy with which the law acts 
is the cause of the friction which arises 
in its manifold and complex operation. 
But this is no law imposed upon vovs 
by any external cause, for there is none 

is not too much to say that no concep- 
tion of Platonism as a coherent whole 
could be formed. A thorough study of 
the eighteenth chapter of the Timaeus is 
absolutely essential before we can even 
think of beginning to understand Plato. 
To this theory the present chapter is 

3. t avd-yKT|s T Kal vov <rvcrrdurc<i>s] 
The first point which it is indispensable 
precisely to determine is the meaning 
of dvayKr) and 17 ir\avu/j.tvr) alria, which 
clearly signify one and the same thing. 
I have already in the note on 46 E to 
some extent indicated what I conceive to 
be Plato's meaning. In the first place it 
is necessary once for all to discard the 
notion that dvayicr) is in any sense what- 
soever an independent force external to 
vovil this would be totally repugnant, as 
I have said, to the cardinal doctrine of 
Platonism, that the only a.px'n /cipijtrews is 
\j/vxn- For this reason we must not sup- 
pose that there is in matter as such any 
resisting power which thwarts the efforts 
of yoDj: this is an absolute misconcep- 
tion. Matter, qua matter, being soul- 
less, is entirely without any sort of power 
of its own : whatever power it has is of 
faxy- What then is dvoiyKi} or the irXa- 
vwfdvtj alrlaf It signifies the forces of 
matter originated by vovs, the sum total 
of the physical laws which govern the 
material universe: that is to say, the 
laws which govern the existence of PoOs 
in the form of plurality. Now these 
laws, once set in motion, must needs 
act constantly according to their nature; 

48 A] 



we have been declaring the creations wrought through mind : 
we must now set by their side those things which come into 
being through necessity. For the generation of this universe 
was a mixed creation by a combination of necessity and reason. 
And whereas reason governed necessity, by persuading her 
to guide the greatest part of created things to the best end, 
on such conditions and principles, through necessity overcome 
by reasonable persuasion, this universe was fashioned in the 
beginning. If then we would really declare its creation in 
the manner whereby it has come to be, we must add also the 
nature of the Errant Cause, and its moving power. Thus then 

such : it is in the very nature of vovs itself 
in its pluralised form. The problem of the 
ir\avw[j.&r] alrla is the same as the problem 
concerning the nature of evil, of which 
Plato has offered us no explicit solution. 

6. iJTT(Uvt]s uiro irciOovs |A<j>po- 
vos] In these words is indicated the 
difference between the dvaymi of Plato 
and the dvdyicr} of Demokritos. For Plato, 
although the forces of nature are inevit- 
able and inexorable in their action, yet 
these forces are themselves expressly de- 
signed by Intelligence for a good end. 
And though in detail evil may arise from 
their working, yet they are so ordained 
as to produce the best result that it was 
possible to attain. Necessity persuaded 
by intelligence means in fact that ne- 
cessity is a mode of the operation of in- 
telligence. The necessity of Demokritos, 
on the other hand, is an all-powerful un- 
intelligent force working without design ; 
and whether good or evil, as we term 
them, arises from its processes, this is 
entirely a matter of chance. Thus in 
Plato's scheme evil is deliberately limited 
to an irreducible minimum, while with 
that of Demokritos the whole question of 
good and evil has nothing to do. 

8. TO TTJS irXava>(j^VTis ctSos alrCas] 
The name irXavufj^vrj alrla does not sig- 
nify that Plato attributed any degree of 
uncertainty or caprice to the operation of 
Every effect is the result of a 

cause; and just that effect and nothing 
else whatsoever must arise from just that 
cause. And were we omniscient, we 
could trace the connexion between cause 
and effect everywhere, and we could con- 
sequently predict everything that should 
happen. As it is, so obscure to us are 
the forces amid which we live, and so 
complex are the influences which work 
upon one another, that in innumerable 
instances we are unable to trace an effect 
back to its causes or to foresee the action 
of dvdyKi). Hence Plato calls dvayK-rj the 
ir\avu/j.{i'r] atria, because, though work- 
ing strictly in obedience to a certain law, 
it is for the most part as inscrutable to us 
as if it acted from arbitrary caprice. We 
can detect the relation of cause and effect 
in results which are immediately due to 
the design of vovs, but frequently not 
in those which are indirectly due to it 
through the action of dvayicri. It is ex- 
tremely inaccurate in Stallbaum to say 
that the irXavufdviri alrla is ' materia cor- 

Q 4>t'piv ir&J>vKev] Literally 'how it 
is its nature to set in motion'. The 
Tr\avwfj.{vr} alrla is the source of insta- 
bility and uncertainty (relatively to us) 
in the order of things ; whence Plato 
terms it the moving influence. What 
Stallbaum means or fails to mean by his 
rendering 'ea ratione, qua ipsius natura 
fert', it is difficult to conjecture. 



[48 A 

(S8e ovv TrdXiv dva^coprjreov, real \a/3ovo~iv avrdav rovrwv Trpoar)- B 
Kovo~av erepav dp^rjv av0i<; av, Kaddirep Trepl ra>v Tore, vvv ovrco 
Trepl rovrcov ird\iv dpxreov OTT' dp^r}?. rrjv 8r) rrpo rfjs ovpavov 
yevea-ecos Trvpos v&aros re KOI aepos /cat 7179 cf>v(riv ffeareov avrrjv 
5 real rd Trpo rovrov TrdOr). vvv yap ovSek TTCO yevecnv avrcov pefjirj- 
VVKCV, aXA* 009 elSoo-t, irvp '6 rl rcore ecrrt real etcacrrov avrwv, 
\eyofiev ap%9 avrd TiQeftevoi, Vroi^eta roO Travros, Trpoo-fjrcov 
ai)rot9 ovS 1 av 0)9 ev (rv\\aj3f)s i8e<ri JJLOVOV CIKOTW^ VTTO rov /cat C 
^pa'xy (frpovovvros d7reitca<r6fjvai. vvv Be ovv TO 76 Trap' 

10 58e 6%erft)' rrjv (J,ev Trepl d-rrdvrwv elVe dp^v eire dp%d<? etre 

rovrcov Trepi ro vvv ov prjreov, 81 a\\o /JLCV ovSev, 8id 8e r& 
elvat, Kara rov irapovra rpovrov rfjs 8ief;6Sov ^XcScrat rd 
SoKovvra. yu-^r' ovv vfAels oieaOe Beiv e/*e \eyeiv, ovr* ai5ro9 av 
7rei6eiv epavrov eirjv av 8vvaTo<;, a>9 opOws eyxeipolp av roaovrov 

'5 eVt/3aXXo/Aei>o9 epyov' ro 8e tear dp%d<; pfjdev 8t,a<f>v\drra)V, rr/v D 
rwv elfcorwv \6ycov Svvajjuv, Tretpd&o/jiai, firjo'evos rjrrov eiicora, 
fj,d\\ov 8e, Kal e/^irpoo'dev air" dp%r)<i Trepl efcdcrrcov KOI ^vf 
\eyeiv. 6eov Srj Kal vvv eV dp%rj rcav \eyofjievcov <rcorr)pa 

i trtpav dpxty' ipx^" frrtpav S. 
8 otfS" &> w coniecit H. oi55a/tws A. oi>8' ws SZ. 

i. Ka6airp ircpl TWV TOTC] i.e. as we 
began at the beginning in expounding 
rci 5tct vov 6e8T)/MOvpy7ifji.tva t so we must 
begin at the beginning again in our ex- 
position of rd 5t' avayicTjt yiyvb/jieva. 

3. irpo TTJS ovpavov y W<retos] The 
question next arises, what is meant by 
the nature of fire, &c before the gene- 
ration of the universe, and the conditions 
anterior to this? Plato evidently means 
that we have to analyse these so-called 
elements into their primary constituents. 
Earlier thinkers had treated them as if 
they were simple primary substances : 
Plato, however, justly maintains that 
they are complex. Now as these sub- 
stances exist in the K6<r/j.os, they are 
everywhere more or less complete and 
in their finished forms ; therefore in ana- 
lysing them into their first beginnings, 
we are dealing with rudimentary forms 
which nowhere exist in the K<40>u>s, but 
which are analytically prior to those 

forms which do exist in the ccoo^tos. But 
the priority is in analysis only; there 
never was a time in which the elements 
existed in these forms. Indeed when we 
come to see the nature of Plato's orot- 
Xet, it will be apparent that they never 
could have an independent existence, irpb 
Tofrrov = irpb rov yevtcrOai rbv ovpavov the 
state of fire, air, &c prior (in analysis) to 
their complete form. 

8. iv o-uXXaprjs t8o-t] This is an 
allusion to the common meaning of OTOI- 
Xeia = letters of the alphabet. So far 
from belonging to this rank, fire and 
the rest are more composite even than 
syllables. For, as we shall see, Plato's 
ultimate aroi-xflov is a particular kind of 
triangle, out of which is formed another 
triangle, and out of that again a regular 
solid figure, which is the corpuscule of fire. 

10. Art dpx^v Art opxdsj Plato 
says he will not, like the early lonians, 
attempt to find some principle or prin- 

D] TIMAIOS. 169 

let us return upon our steps, and when we have found a second 
fitting cause for the things aforesaid, let us once more, pro- 
ceeding in the present case as we did in the former, begin over 
again from the beginning. Now we must examine what came 
before the creation of the heavens, the very origin of fire and 
water and air and earth, and the conditions that were before 
them. For now no one has declared the manner of their 
generation ; but we speak as if men knew what is fire and 
each of the others, and we treat them as beginnings, as elements 
of the whole ; whereas by one who has ever so little intelligence 
they could not plausibly be represented as belonging even to 
the class of syllables. Now however let our say thus be said. 
The first principle or principles or whatever we may hold it 
to be which underlies all things we must not declare at present, 
for no other reason but that it is difficult according to the 
present method of our exposition to make clear our opinion. 
You must not then deem that I ought to discourse of this, 
nor could I persuade myself that I should be right in essaying 
so mighty a task. But holding fast the principle we laid down 
at the outset, the value of a probable account, I will strive to 
give an explanation that is no less probable than another, but 
more so ; returning back to describe from the beginning each 
and all things. So now again at the outset of our quest let 
us call upon God to pilot us safe through a strange and un- 

ciples to serve as an dpxr) for matter, %x eiv - 

solely for the reason that in a physical 17. Kal $\i.Trpo<r9tv air' dpxtjs] Stall- 
inquiry (/card rbv irapovra rpoirov TTJS baum, who joins pa.\\ov 5 with what fol- 
5te 68ov) it is hardly possible to arrive lows, proposes to read Kara ret tuirpoaOev. 
at such an dpxn ' a rea l a-PM can only be But no change is necessary. tfj.irpoff6ei> 
attained by dialectic. The Ionian dpx<d means 'where we were before', viz. at 
were no dpxo-l at all. And so we may the starting-point of the inquiry. I think 
analyse matter into the ultimate geo- Martin is justified in his rendering 'reve- 
metrical forms, which are the law of its nant sur mes pas jusqu'au commence- 
composition, but these are not properly ment'. Liridau suggests fj.a\\ov 8' i) KO.T' 
speaking dpxai- In the following chapter fyirpoffttcv, which is not Greek, as I 
Plato, treating the subject metaphysically, think. 

does at least propound an apxy for matter 18. 4 aroirov Kal aiiOovs SiTjyqcrews] 

by far more recondite than any which had The metaphor is evidently taken from 

yet been conceived. mariners embarking on a voyage of dis- 

ii. TTJS 8ie68ov] Cf. Parmenides 1 36 E covery in some new and unexplored 

dvev ravTTjs TTJS 5ta irdvruv 5ie65ou re Kal ocean. Plato prays to be delivered from 

ddvvarov ivrv^vro. T$ d\i)6tt vovv the perils of the voyage and brought safe 



[48 D 

CLTOTCOV teal dr/0ov<; Si^y^a-ems Trpos TO rutv eltcoTWV Soypa Bia- 
<r<o%eiv T}/J,d<> eTrucaXecrdfjievoi ird\iv dp%(0jji,e6a \eyeiv. E 

XVIII. 'H 8' ovv av0t<; dp^rj Trepl TOV rravTos o~Ta> fj,ei%6v(a$ 

T^? TrpocrOev 8ippr)fj,evr}. Tore fJ,ev yap 8vo ei8r) 8iei\6fjt,eOa, vvv 

5 8e TPLTOV a\\o 761/09 ^piv 8r}\a)Teov. rd jj,ev yap 8vo iKavd yv 

eir\ rot? efj,Trpoo~6ev Xe^Oelcnv, ev pev 005 TrapaSeiyfAaros el8o<; 

VOTJTOV teal del Kara ravrd ov, jJii^^a 8e 7rapa8eiy- 49 A 
Sevrepov, yeveviv e%ov /cat oparov rplrov 8e Tore /lev ov 
vofiio-avres TO, 8vo e^etv iaj/(09, vvv 8e 6 \6yo$ eoitcev 
10 eio-avay/cd^eiv %a\7rbv teal dftvo'pov elSos 7rt%ei,peiv \6yois ejj,(f)a- 
via-ai. TIV ovv e%ov Svva/Aiv Kara <f>v<riv avTo vTro\r)7rTeov ; 
TOidvSe //.aXtcrra, 7rdo~r)s elvai yevea-eto^ vTroSo^v avTijv, olov 

i &T)Oovs : dXijffovs A. 

to the haven of probability. Martin is 
certainly mistaken in translating 'pour 
qu'elle nous preserve de discours inco- 
herents et bizarres'. Plato shows him- 
self fully alive to the difficulty of the 
subject he is about to treat and the entire 
novelty of his speculations. A glimpse 
of his theory of matter has been afforded 
in the Philebus, but here he carries his 
analysis far deeper. Compare 533, where 
he calls his very peculiar corpuscular 
theory 0^77$ \6yos. 

48 E 52 D, c. xviii. We must extend 
the classification of all things which we 
formerly made. To the ideal model and 
the sensible copy which we then as- 
sumed must be added the substrate in 
which generation takes place. For con- 
sider: the four elements, as men call 
them, fire, air, water, earth, are con- 
tinually changing places and passing one 
into another, so that we can never with 
any security say, this is fire, or this is 
water. Indeed we should not apply the 
word this to them at all, nor any other 
expression which signifies permanency: 
the most we can do is to say they are 
'such-like'. To the substrate alone is it 
safe to apply the term 'this'. For it 
alone never changes its nature ; but is as 
it were a matrix receiving all the forms 
that enter into it, which forms are the 

sensible semblances of the eternal ideas. 
So then we must distinguish these three, 
the eternal type, the generated copy, and 
the substrate wherein it is generated. 
This substrate must be without form or 
quality, else it would not faithfully ex- 
press the images that enter into it, but 
would intrude its own attributes. It is 
not then fire nor any other of the ele- 
ments, but a viewless and formless nature, 
which takes on it now the form of fire, 
anon the form of water, and all per- 
ceptible things. But since we talk of 
images entering in, we must ask, is there 
a type, an idea of fire and the rest where- 
of we behold the images? or are the 
visible images themselves the most real 
existence which is? We cannot dwell on 
this question at length: but we may 
briefly answer it thus. If knowledge 
differs from true opinion, then the ideas 
exist beyond the sensible images ; if not, 
then sensibles alone are realities. Now 
it is a fact that knowledge differs from 
true opinion; for one is the result of 
teaching, the other of persuasion ; one is 
the possession of all men, the other of 
the gods alone and but a few among man- 
kind. Therefore the ideas exist eternally, 
neither passing forth of their own nature 
nor receiving aught therein, apprehensible 
by thought alone : next there are the 

49 A] 



familiar discourse to the haven of probability ; and thus let 
us begin once more. 

XVIII. Our new exposition of the universe then must be 
founded on a fuller classification than the former. Then we 
distinguished two forms, but now a third kind must be disclosed. 
The two were indeed enough for our former discussion, when 
we laid down one form as the pattern, intelligible and change- 
less, the second as a copy of the pattern, which comes into 
being and is visible. A third we did not then distinguish, 
deeming that the two would suffice : but now, it seems, by 
constraint of our discourse we must try to express and make 
manifest a form obscure and dim. What power then must we 
conceive that nature has given it ? something like this. It is 
the receptacle, and as it were the nurse, of all becoming. This 

images called after their names, sensible 
and perishable and ever in transition: 
thirdly the receptacle of all becoming, 
which is space, imperishable and imper- 
ceptible, apprehended by a kind of 
bastard reasoning. This third is the 
cause why, like men in a dream, we de- 
clare that everything which exists must be 
in some place, and what is nowhere in 
heaven or earth is nothing. And this 
dream we carry into the region of waking 
verity, even the ideas; we do not remem- 
ber that, since an image is not its own 
type, it must be imaged in something else, 
or else be not at all : for true reason de- 
clares that, while the type is one, and the 
image another, they must be apart; for 
they cannot exist one in the other and so 
be one and two at once. 

3. |ii.6vs] i.e. the classification must 
be more comprehensive: the former left 
no room for one of the most important 
principles in nature. 

4. TOTS |iiv yo.f>] The reference is to 
28 A, where Timaeus divides the universe 
into ov and ytyv6fj.evov. 

5. TO. p.ev -yap Svo IKO.VCI r\v] This 
remark is most characteristic of Plato, 
who always confines himself to the limits 
of the subject in hand. He is like a good 
general, who does not call upon his re- 

serves till they are wanted. So in the 
Philebus he carries his analysis of dSrei- 
pov no further than to describe it as in- 
definitely qualified, because that served 
all the purpose of that dialogue. And in 
the same way at the earlier stage of 
Timaeus's exposition he distinguishes 
only such principles of the universe as 
then concern the argument. 

7. |x(|xi]|xa] It may be as well to 
draw attention to the fact that through- 
out all the dialogue the relation of par- 
ticular to idea is one of /il/M?(rts : the old 
Ai^0eij has disappeared never to return. 

10. xoXcir&v Kol d(iv8p6v ctSos] Plato 
repeatedly in the most emphatic language 
expresses his sense of the difficulty and 
obscurity attaching to this question con- 
cerning the substrate of material existence. 
The difficulty is recognised also in the 
Philebus, though in less forcible terms, cf. 
24 A xXei'ii' / y&p Kal &fj.<f>ia-prjT^ffifj.ov 
o KeXetfw <re ffKOireiv. It must be remem- 
bered too that Plato's conception was an 
absolute novelty in philosophy. Aristotle 
has a curiously perverse reference to the 
theory of the Timaeus in de gen. et corr. 
II i 329* 13 foil. 

12. viroSoxijv] The substrate is the 
'receptacle' of all things that become, 
inasmuch as it provides them with a place 

i/2 HAATflNOS [49 A 

ridr/vrjv. eiprjrai (lev ovv dXrjOes, Set Be evapyecrrepov elrrelv 
trepl avrov' %a\7rdv Be, a\\o)9 re Kal Biori, TrpoaTroprjOrjvat, rrepl B 
Trypo? ical rwv fjuerd Trvpos dvajKaiov rovrov xdpw rovrwv <ydp 
elirelv eKavrov, orrolov ovrws vBwp ^prj \ejeiv /-taXXov rj rrvp /cat 
5 orrolov oriovv fjia\\ov rj Kal arravra Ka& eKaarov re, oim>9 ware 
Tivl TTKTTM Kal /8e/3ai&) xprja-aaOat, \6<yq), ^a\errov. TTCO? ovv Brj 
TOUT' avro KOI irrj Kal ri irepl avrwv etVcoTO>9 SiaTroprjOevres av 
\eyoifj,i> ; irpcorov (jiev, o Srj vvv vSatp eJi/o/aa/ca/iei/, TT^VV^GVOV, a5? C 
8oKovfj,v, \i6ovs Kal <yijv jiyvof^evov opw/j^v, r^Ko^evov Se Kal 

10 BiaKptvofievov av r avrov rovro 7rvevp>a Kal depa, ^vjKavOevra Se 
dipa Trvp, avarca\(,v 8e irvp <rv<yKpidev Kal Karacrft<r6ev et? ISeav 
re diriov av0is depos, Kal iraXiv depa gvviovra Kal TrvKvovpevov 
vtyos Kal 6/j,i'x\'r)v, eK Se rovrfov ert fjid\\ov vfjL7ri\ovfj,eva)v peov 
v8o)p, e% v&aros Se 7171^ Kal Xt^oi/9 av0i<?, KVK\OV re ovra) SiaBi- 

15 Sovra 6t? aX\7;Xa, <? (paiverat, rrjv <yeve(riv. ovra) 8rj rovrwv D 
ovSeTTore rwv avrwv eKdarcov (pavra^o/jLevwv, rcolov avrwv eo<? ov 
oriovv rovro Kal OVK d\\o Trayicos Stt<r^upt^o/Ltei/09 OVK aiayy- 
velrai rt? eavrov ; OVK eartv, d\\' aa-t^aXecrrara jj,aKp(a rrepl 
rovrwv rt^eyaez/ov? wSe \eyeiv del o KaOop&p,ev d\\ore a\\rj 

10 <yiyv6fjievov, 0)9 Trvp, pr) rovro d\\d TO roiovrov e/cacrrore rrpoa'- 
raXi)0& SZ. 6 TTWJ oSv 5-f) : TTWJ ovv Stf irov A. 

to become in: it is their 'nurse', because course = air, water, earth. 

it fosters them, so to speak, and is the 5. airavra Ka9' i-Kao-n&v TC] i.e. to 

means of their existence; without it they call it all or (some one) severally. The 

could not exist in any way. Stallbaum's slight change of construction in ica.6' 

account of it as a vessel containing sensi- &CCWTOI' is not at all harsh, and certainly 

ble things is most erroneous; indeed his Stallbaum's plan of joining the words 

treatment of the whole subject is as con- with the following is not an improvement. 

fused as it can well be. It will be con- Seeing that the four elements are per- 

venient to defer a fuller discussion of petually interchanging there can be no 

Plato's viroSoxy until this conception re- propriety in giving any fixed name to any 

ceives its final development at the end of one of them : while we apply the term 

the chapter. appropriate to one form, the substance 

2. irf>oa.Tropi\9r]va.\. ircpl irvpcJs] This may have passed into another. 

necessity arises because the conception of 7. clKorws should be joined with 8ia- 

the virodoxh as an unchanging substrate iroptj&vTcs. 'raising what reasonable 

involves the conception of fire and the question'. 

rest as merely transitory conditions of this 9. XtOovs Kal yfjv] Plato here speaks 

substrate : therefore we must put the as if all four elements were interchange- 

question, what is the real nature of this able : this statement is corrected in 54 c, 

appearance which we call fire? And this where we find that earth, as having a 

in its turn raises the question of the ex- different base, will not pass into the other 

istence of the ideas, rwv perd. irvpbt of elements, nor they into it : the other 

D] TIMAIOS. 173 

saying is true, but we must put it in clearer language : and this 
is hard ; especially as for the sake of it we must needs inquire 
into fire and the substances that rank with fire. For it is hard 
to say which of all these we ought to call water any more than 
fire, or indeed which we ought to call by any given name, 
rather than all and each severally, in such a way as to employ 
any truthful and trustworthy mode of speech. How then are we 
to deal with this point, and what is the question that we should 
properly raise concerning it ? In the first place, what we now have 
named water, by condensation, as we suppose, we see turning 
to stones and earth ; and by rarefying and expanding this same 
element becomes wind and air ; and air when inflamed becomes 
fire : and conversely fire contracted and quenched returns again 
to the form of air; also air concentrating and condensing 
becomes cloud and mist ; and from these yet further com- 
pressed comes flowing water ; and from water earth and stones 
once more : and so, it appears, they hand on one to another 
the cycle of generation. Thus then since these several bodies 
never assume one constant form, which of them can we posi- 
tively affirm to be really this and not another without being 
shamed in our own eyes ? It cannot be : it is far the safest 
course when we make a statement concerning them to speak 
as follows. What we see in process of perpetual transmutation, 
as for instance fire, we must not call this, but such-tike is the 

three however are interchangeable. Note aWis. KVK\OV is perfectly right, being a 

however that the present statement is predicate to yiveaiv: 'handing on their 

guarded with the qualification ws doKov- generation as a circle': the re is also right, 

/j.fv. Of course this limitation of the in- coupling diadiS6vra and yiyvofievov. There 

terchangeability does not affect Plato's is more to be said for omitting re after 

argument, which is probably the reason ISiav ; in which case vvyKpidtv and KO.TO.- 

why it is not mentioned here. fffieeOtv would be subordinate to dirioV : 

n. dvdiroXiv &] This is just the 656$ but as it is in all the mss. I have not 

dvu K&TU ula. of Herakleitos. Stallbaum thought fit to expunge it. 

wishes to omit re after I8tav and after 20. \>.r\ TOVTO dXXd TO TOIOVTOV] That 

ictK\ov, which he would alter to /cv/cXy. is to say, we must not speak of it as a 

There is really no occasion for any of substance, but as a quality : in Aristotelian 

these changes. The main participles in phrase, it is not inroicelfjievov, but ica.0' 

the sentence ytyvopfvov, ffvyKpi8{v, Kara- vwoKfi^vov. TOVTO denotes what a thing 

fffifffetv, &iri6v, Siadid6vra, are governed is, TOIOVTOV what we predicate of it. Fire 

by opw^ev, while the rest are subordinate is merely an appearance which the inro- 

to yiyv6fj.cvov, which has to be supplied SOXTJ assumes for the time being: we 

again with the clauses ical ird\iv... \l6ovs must not say then 'this portion of space 

174 IIAATHNOS [49 D 

ayopevetv Trvp, fjLfjBe vBwp TOVTO d\\d TO TOIOVTOV del, jj,r)Be aXXo 
TTOTe /jurjBev <W9 Tiva e%ov /SeftatorrjTa, ocra BeiKvvvT<; raj pr/pari E 
TCO roSe Kal TOVTO Trpoo-^pcaf^evot Bij\ovv tfyovneOd rr (f>eiyei yap 

> f / \ /5> \ \ \ \ rf 


5 fjiovifia o$9 OVTCL avTa evBeiKWTai (frdais. aXXa TavTa fj,ev etcacrTa 
fir) \eyeiv, TO be TOIOVTOV del Trepifapofievov d/io/W etcdcrTov irkpi 
Kal %vpTrdvT(av OVTW Ka\elv Kal &rj ical irvp TO Bid Trai/ro? TOI- 
OVTOV Kal cnrav '6<rov7rep dv e%r) yevecnv. ev c5 Be eyjiyvo/jieva del 
eicacrTa avTWV (fravTa^eTat Kal Tcd\iv eKeiQev aTroXXurat, fiovov 

10 eKelvo av Trpoo-ayopeveiv rc3 re TOVTO Kal TO> ToBe Trpoa"xpa)/j,evov<; 50 A 
ovopaTi, TO Be OTTOIOVOVV TC, depfjibv r) \VKOV fj Kal OTIOVV TWV 
evavTicov, Kal trdvff' o<ra CK TOVTCOV, jjt,r)8ev eKelvo av TOVTWV Ka- 
\eiv. eri Be <ra$e<TTepov avTOv vrepi irpoOv^Teov avOis elirelv. 
el jdp TrdvTa T49 o-^^ara 7rXa<ra9 e/c %pv<Tov fjirjBev /AeraTrXaTTtwv 

15 iravoiTo eKaffTa et9 airavTa, BeiKvvvTos Bij TWOS avT&v ev Kal 
epopevov rt TTOT' ecrrt, fiaKpw irpos d\i]0iav d(r<f)a\e<rTaTov eljrelv B 
art ^/ovo-09, TO Be Tpvycovov '6<ra re aXXa o-^^ara eveyljveTO, 

4 TOV r6Se Kal : TOV r65e KO! rrfv S. TOVTO'. TOVTOV AS. 

6 6/to/ws scripsi suadente S. ceteri ofioiov. 16 tpo^vov: irpoffepofjitvov S. 

is fire', but 'this portion of space has the speaks of material phenomena. 

property of fire for its present condition '. 6. |M] Xfyeuv] The infinitives still de- 

For the same portion of space may pend upon do-^aX^crTara in D. 

presently assume the appearance of air ircpuf>p6|xvov opoCcos] On the sug- 

and of water; whence we see that the gestion of Stallbaum I have adopted 

only permanent thing is the space; fire, d/iofos for ofioiov. The meaning is that 

air, water are merely its transitory attri- the term TOIOVTOV keeping pace with the 

butes derived from the 6fj.oiwfj.aTa im- elements in their transformations (jrept- 

pressed upon it. <pfp6fj.fvov) can always be applied to any 

3. r<p roSe teal TOVTO] Compare of them in the same sense (6/to/ws). That 

Theaetetus 157 B TO S' ov Set, us o TUV is to say TOIOVTOV is a word which does 

<ro<t>&v Xo7oj, ovre TI ^vyx w P ^ v o$ Te T v not denote a permanent substance but a 

otfr' t/jiov oCre rode our' iKfivo our' a\Xo variable attribute: therefore we can apply 

ovStv 6vofj.a, & TI dv iffTrj. Also 183 A it to fire &c without fear of treating such 

5et 5 ovSt TOIITO TO OVTW \tyeiV oi8 yap qualities as substantial fixities. If opoiov 

av ?TI KIVOITO TO OVTW ovo' a& IJ.T] OVTW be retained, it must be regarded as a 

ovdt yap TOVTO Kli>ri<ris ' dXXd TIV' aXX^** predicate, and the sense will still be the 

<t>(avT]v 0fT^ov TO?S TOV \6yov TOVTOV \tyov- same : but I think the construction is too 

ffiv, us vvv ye wpbs T^V avTtav viroOeffiv OVK awkward to have come from Plato. For 

tx ov<ri - f>"niJ-aTa, el HTJ apa TO ovd' SITUS. Trepi<f>ep6/J.evoi> compare Theaetetus 202 A 

Thus we see that what is in the Theae- TO.VTO. fiev yap irepiTpe\ovTa iraffi irpoff- 

tetus described as the olKeioraTrj StaXexroj <f>epea6ai. : where TOUTO = aiVo, eKeiv , 

of the Herakleiteans is here expressly a- exaffTov and the like. 

dopted by Plato as his own, when he 7. TO Bid iravro's] i.e. fire is the name 

50 B] TIMAI02. 175 

appellation we must confer on fire ; nor must we call water 
this, but always such; nor must we apply to anything, as if 
it had any stability, such predicates as we express by the 
use of the terms this and that and suppose that we signify 
something thereby. For it flees and will not abide such 
terms as this and that and relative to this, and every phrase 
which represents it as stable. The word this we must not 
use of any of them; but such, applying in the same sense to 
all their mutations, we must predicate of each and all : fire we 
must call that which universally has that appearance ; and so 
must we name all things such as come into being. That 
wherein they come to be severally and show themselves, and 
from whence again they perish, in naming that alone must 
we use the words that and this; but whatever has any quality, 
such as white or hot or any of two opposite attributes, and all 
combinations of these, we must denote by no such term. 

But we must try to speak yet more clearly on this matter. 
Suppose a man having moulded all kinds of figures out of 
gold should unceasingly remould them, interchanging them 
all with one another, it were much the safest thing in view 
of truth to say that it is gold ; but as to the triangles or any 

we give to such and such a combination <f>6opa, dSwarov tKeivo irpotrayopevevdai ^ 

of attributes wheresoever in nature it may ov ytyovev. Kairoi yt <t>rj<ri (j.a.Kp$ a.\i)6ta- 

appear. TO.TOV elvai xP Vff ^ v Myeiv %Ka<TTOi> flvai. 

g. p.6vov IKCIVO] To the viroSox'n, How this criticism applies I fail to see. 

on the other hand, we can and must apply That which suffers yve<ri$ Kal - tpOopa. is 

the word rovro, because it is ever un- the shapes, whether in the virodoxh or in 

changing. The manifold forms it assumes the gold. These shapes have not their 

are merely impressed on it from without ; ytve<ris from the vTroSoxrj nor from the 

underlying them all its own nature is the gold : Plato accurately describes the viro- 

same. doxy not as rd ^ o5, which it is not, but 

n. OTIOVV TWV evavrCwv] Not the as rb tv $ ylyvtrai, which it is. When 

opposites to hot and white, but any of Plato bids us say 'this is gold', not 'this 

the ivavriorriTes which are the attributes is a cube', he does not mean that the 

predicable of matter. o<ra K rovruv sig- cubic shape is gold, or that a cubic shape 

nifies any combination of simple qualities. is generated out of gold ; but that in 

14. irXcwras K xP v<ro ^l Aristotle calling it gold we designate the substance, 

gives a strange turn to this, de gen, et whereas if we call it a cube, we are desig- 

corr. II i 32p a 17. Referring to the nating an attribute which is accidental 

illustration of the golden figures he says, and transitory. In the golden cube the 

Kairot Kal TOVTO 01) KaXws \4yercu, TOVTOV gold is (or rather serves to illustrate) TOV- 

rov rpoirov XeyofAevov, d\\' wv /*>> d\- TO, the substance, the cubic form is rot- 

Xoiwcru, i<mv OUTWS, uv 8t yfreffis Kal OVTOV, the quality. 

[50 B 

\eyeiv TavTa w? ovra, & ye ^era^v TiOepevov 
t, aXX* edv apa teal TO TOIOVTOV per acr^xxXeta? e6e\r) Be- 
i TIVO$, dycnrdv. 6 avTos Brj Xo'yo? Kal Trepl r^? ra Trdvra 
w^ara <f>v<rew TCLVTOV avrrjv del Trpoo-prjTeov etc yap 
5 Trjs eavrfjf TO irapairav OVK e^/crraTat Bvvd(j,ea)<;. 8e%Tal re yap 
ael rd iravra, Kal /j,op<j)r)v ovBepiav iroTe ovBevl roav elffiovTcov c 
opolav ei\r](pv ovSafAp ovBa/juwf Kfj,ayelov yap fyva-ei Travrl /cei- 
rai, Kivovpevov re Kal Siacr^ij/jiari^ofievov VTTO rwv elaiovrcov, 
<paiVTai Be Si eiceiva d\\ore aX-Xoto^* rd Be el<Ti6vTa Kal efftovra 
10 TWV ovroiv del fJLi^jMara, rvTrfoOevra air avroav rpojrov rivd 
8v<r<ppa(TTOV teal Oav^aa'rov, ov elcravdis fj,eTifj,ei>. ev & ovv rcS 
Trapovri ^prf yevij BiavorjBrjvai rpirrd, TO fiev yLyvbp,evov, TO 8' ev 
q> yiyveTai, TO 8' odev d(f)0fj,oiovfj,evov <pveTai TO ytyv6/j,evov Kal D 
Brj Kal TrpoGeiKCKrai TrpeTret TO fj,ev Be%6fj,evov p^rjTpL, TO S' odev 
15 TraTpl, Trjv Be /^erafi) TOVTCOV <f>v(Tii> exyova), vorjaal re, e9 OVK 
dv aXXa)9, eKTVTrwfjiaTos eveo-Oat, /LteXXoi/ro9 IBetv TTOIKI^OV Tratra? 
TroiKtXias, TOUT' ai/TO, ev c5 eKTVTrovjAevov evio-TaTai, yevoiT dv 
Trape&Kevacr/jLevov ev, 7r\r)v d^op^ov ov eKelvwv dirao'wv TWV IBewv, 

10 dvTa. post del dedit A. 

2. lav apa Kal TO TOIOUTOV] Plato 
warns us that we have gone to the ut- 
termost verge of security in venturing 
to describe phenomena even in terms 
of quality : the advanced Herakleitean 
point of view is as conspicuous here as 
in the passages quoted above from the 

4. ravrov avnjv del wpoo-piyHov] 
We are not here to take ravrov in the 
technical sense in which it is used in 
35 A. For as the tiiroSoxrj is the home 
of ytyvo/JLeva, as it is the region of thought 
as pluralised in material objects, it must 
belong to the domain of Oarepov : and 
thus TO.VTOV will simply denote the change- 
lessness of the substrate contrasted with 
\he mutability of the phenomena. Never- 
theless, as we saw that there is a sense 
in which time may be spoken of as eter- 
nal (see 37 D), so there is a sense in 
which the principle of ravrbv may be 
said to inhere in ffarepov. The phe- 
nomena which belong to the sphere of 

pluralised thought are transient, but this 
mode or law of their appearance under 
the form of space is changeless. Con- 
sidered as the law or principle of pluralised 
existence the tiro5o\r) may be termed 

IK ydp TTJS tavrfjs] Thus we have 
two immutable fixities, the ideas and the 
uTroSox'?, between which is the fluctuating 
mass of sensible appearances. 

7. tK^xa-yeiov] That is to say, as it 
were a plastic material capable of being 
moulded into any form, like a mass of 
soft wax or the molten gold in the simile 
above. Plato seeks by frequently varying 
his metaphor to bring home to the under- 
standing his novel and unfamiliar con- 
ception of the substrate. 

g. TO. 8i tlo-iovra Kal e'giovraj These 
forms which pass in and out of the sub- 
strate are of course not the ideas, which 
go not forth into aught else : here comes 
in the difference between the Platonism of 
the Timaeus and that of the Republic and 

D] TIMAIO2. 177 

other shapes that were impressed on it, never to speak of 
them as existing, seeing that they change even as we are in 
the act of defining them ; but if it will admit the term such with 
any tolerable security, we must be content. The same lan- 
guage must be applied to the nature which receives into it 
all material things : we must call it always the same ; for it 
never departs from its own function at all. It ever receives 
all things into it and has nowhere any form in any wise like 
to aught of the shapes that enter into it. For it is as the 
substance wherein all things are naturally moulded, being 
stirred and informed by the entering shapes ; and owing to 
them it appears different from time to time. But the shapes 
which pass in and out are likenesses of the eternal existences, 
being copied from them in a fashion wondrous and hard to 
declare, which we will follow up later on. For the present how- 
ever we must conceive three kinds : first that which comes 
to be, secondly that wherein it comes to be, third that from 
which the becoming is copied when it is created. And we 
may liken the recipient to a mother, the model to a father, 
and that which is between them to a child ; and we must 
remember that if a moulded copy is to present to view 
all varieties of form, the matter in which it is moulded cannot 
be rightly prepared unless it be entirely bereft of all those 

Phacdo : they are, like the ir^/aaj tx ovra 1 1 ov cl<rav9is JJ^TIJMV] This refers 

of the Philebus, the form, as distinguished probably to the conclusion of the chap- 

from the substance of material objects, ter, 52 c. 

apart from which they have no inde- 15. KY<>VW] The IKJOVO. are the ma- 

pendent existence ; they are in fact (apart terial phenomena formed by the impress 

from their relation to the ideas) practi- of the tlaiovra upon the ttc/j.ayfioi>. 

cally indistinguishable from Aristotle's 16. I8tiv iroucCXov] Ideiv follows troi- 

elSoj as opposed to v\i). These are the icl\ov, to which irdffas irouciXlas is a cog- 

visible semblances of the invisible verities nate accusative. Plato is rather fond of 

of the ideal world, whereupon they are this construction with Idfiv, cf. Phaedo 

modelled in a mysterious manner hard 84 c, Republic 615 E, Phaedrtis 2 SOB. 

to explain : for if is not easy to under- 18. &\i.op4>ov Sv] Aristotle has de- 

stand how the immaterial is expressed rived from hence his description of the 

in terms of matter, or the invisible repre- thinking faculty, de anima in iv 429* 15 

sented by a visible symbol. The elffiovra diraOes apa del flvai, SKTIKW 5 TOV etSovs 

must then be distinguished (logically, for nal roiovrov, d\\a / TOVTO 

they are never actually separable) from dvdyicr) apa, tirel irdvTO. voei, d/j.iyrj thai, 

the material objects which they inform ; uffirep <f>rj<rlv 'Avaaycpas, tva xparri, TOVTO 

these objects are dffiovTa. + CKnayaov. 5' tffTiv tvo yvwplfrj irap(fj.<j>a.iv6nti>ov yap 

P. T. 12 

178 DAATHNOS [50 D 

oaa<t /ieXXot Be^eaOai TroOev. ofioiov yap ov TWV tTreiatovrcov TIV\ E 
TO. T//? evavTiav rd re rfjs TO trapdirav a\\r)? (frvcrews, OTTOT' e\0oi, 
Be%6fj.vov /ca/cct><? av dtyofiotoi, rrjv avrov Trape/jufralvov o^nv. Bio 
Kal TrdvTwv e/cro9 elBoav elvai xpewv TO TO, TTOVTCL eVSe6/iei>oz> eV 

5 avro) yevr), KaOdirep irepl TO, aXet/i/iara, oTrocra evwBrj, Te^vr] 
fj,r)%avot)VTai irpwTOv TOUT' avro inrdp^ov, TTOIOVO~IV o TI /iaXtcrra 
dvouBrj TO, Se6/jieva vypd Ta? ocr//,a9* ocroi Te ev ncrt r&v /iaXa/coCv 
a")(rjpUTa ajrofjidTTeiv eVt^etpoOcrt, TO Trapdirav <7^yu.a o^Sey ev- 
Br)\ov VTrdp^eiv e<ao~t, irpoojjiaXvvavTCS Se o TI \eioTaTov direp- 

10 yd^ovTai. TavTov ovv Kal TU> TO, T<av irdvTwv dei Te OVTWV Kara 51 A 
irav eavTov ?roXXa/ct9 d<f>ofj,oi(afj,aTa /caXcS? //.eXXo^Tt 

eT09 ai/T&i Trpoo-ijfcet, Trefyvicevai, TWV elSrov. 8to ST) 

opctTov Kal TrdvTWS aio~07)Tov injTepa KCU 
yrjv /i^Te depa jj.r/T irvp firjTe vBwp T^eywfiev, fj,r}T Baa e/c 

15 TovToiv jAijTe eg (ov TavTa yeyovev aXX' dvoparov etSo? TI Kal 
dfjioptyov, Trai'Se^e?, (jLTa\afj,(3dvov Be djropwTaTd Try TOV vor/rov 
Kal Bvo-a\(i)TOTaTov avTO Xeyo^Te? ov tyevaopeda' KaO' oaov 8' e'/c B 
TU>V Trpoeiprjfievwv BvvaTov e<f>i,Kveto~0at T^? ^i/trew? ai/Tov, T//8' av 

7 avdiSrj : evJiSrj A. dwSij HZ. 

TO d\\oTpioi> Kal avTi<pp6.TTei. It 
will be observed that the passage of 
Aristotle is full of verbal echoes of the 
Timaeus : and his aTraOts applied to the 
mind is exactly equivalent to Plato's 
d/j.op<j)oi> applied to the vTroSox^. 

18. TWV I83v] Not the ideas, which 
do not enter into the virodoxrf, but the 
shapes which symbolise them the ei<r- 
toVra /cai tt&rra. 

3. T^V avrov -n-apffufjaivov o|/iv] If 
the vTrodox'n had any quality of its own, 
this quality would mingle with that im- 
pressed upon it by any of the elffiovra 
and mar the faithfulness of the 
The only condition which the in 
imposes upon our sensuous perceptions 
is that they shall exist in what we term 
space : we can perceive nothing that is 
not in space. Sensuous perceptions, as 
we have said, are symbols of the ideas : 
now it is quite free to the senses to sym- 
bolise an idea by the perception of round 
or square or any other shape, without 

any interference from the vwoSox^ The 
latter ira.pfjuj>aivei TTJV avrrjs 6\jsiv just 
in so far as round square and the like 
are and must be shapes that have ex- 

6. |*T|XttVwvTai...Troiov(riv] These two 
words are in a kind of apposition. Corn- 
pare Euripides Heraclidae 181 dWf, vTrap- 
x ei ^" T0 '^' ^ r V ^5 X^ "^ \ flirfii> aKovaal 
T tv /j.{pei Trdpeffri pot. This same simile 
of the unguent is used by Lucretius II 
848 to illustrate the necessary absence of 
secondary qualities from his atoms. 

10. TWV Trdvrwv eU T 6'vrwv] Stall- 
baum would omit the re, and VOTJTUV has 
been proposed instead of itavrwv. But 
iravruv is indispensable : it is because the 
itc^a-ye'iov has to receive all forms that it 
can have no form of its own. Nor is the 
omission of re satisfactory. Plato would 
probably have written irdvruv TWV del 
OVTWV. I think the text may be defended 
as it stands, del re OVTUV being added to 
explain what is meant by TU>V 

5i B] TIMAIO2. 179 

forms which it is about to receive from without. For were 
it like any one of the entering shapes, whenever that of an op- 
posite or entirely different nature came upon it, it would in 
receiving it give the impression badly, intruding its own form. 
Wherefore that which shall receive all forms within itself must 
be utterly without share in any of the forms ; just as in the 
making of sweet unguents, men purposely contrive, as the 
beginning of the work, to make the fluids that are to receive 
the perfumes perfectly scentless : and those who set about 
moulding figures in any soft substance do not suffer any shape 
to show itself therein at the beginning, but they first knead it 
smooth and make it as uniform as they can. In the same way 
it behoves that which is fitly to receive many times over its 
whole extent likenesses of all things, that is of all eternal ex- 
istences, to be itself naturally without part or lot in any of the 
forms. Therefore the mother and recipient of creation which is 
visible and by any sense perceptible we must call neither earth 
nor air nor fire nor water, nor the combinations of these nor the 
elements of which they are formed : but we shall not err in 
affirming it to be a viewless nature and formless, all-receiving, 
in some manner most bewildering and hard to comprehend par- 
taking of the intelligible. But so far as from what has been said 
we may arrive at its nature, this would be the most just account 

all things, that is, all eternal existences. that Aristotle is treating from a physical 

Perhaps however we should read del TTOTS point of view a subject which Plato 

OVTUV. deals with metaphysically. 

12. avTu> irpo<rf[Kti] Stallbaum er- 16. fieTaX.a[i|3avov 8i airopcoTara ITT) 

roneously considers O.UT$ to be redun- TOV VOTJTOV] Plato's meaning is more 

dant : it is emphatic 'must itself be fully expressed in 52 B. The puzzle 

destitute of all forms'. arises from the fact that this viroSoxn, 

14. (xrjTt Yn v ] It is indeed hard to though it does not form part of real ex- 
conceive how Aristotle would attempt to istence, is yet grasped by the reason and 
justify his assertion gen. et corr. n i not by the senses. In the metaphysical 
329* 13 ws 5' tv T$ ytypcurrai scheme represented by the Phaedo we 
ot/S^et %x (l SiopifffMV 01) yap ftpijxe ffa<f>u)s should find that constituting the test of 
TO iravoex^s, ft x u ptf fTat T ^"' <rroixeiwv . reality, the object of reason being a real 
If Plato has not most explicitly charac- existence, the object of sense an un- 
terised the relation between the iravSfxts reality. But now we have found an 
and the vroixeta, then there is no such anomalous principle which defies this 
thing as precision in language. But the test. It is not surprising then that Plato 
truth is, as not rarely happens when describes it as SwraXwriraTw. 
Aristotle is at cross purposes with Plato, 

12 2 

i8o nAATflNOS [51 B - 

Tt<? opdorara \zyoi, Trvp fiev e/cacrroTe avrov TO ireTrvpw^evov /ze/?o<? 
<j>aiveo~6ai, TO Be vypavdev vBwp, >yfjv Be Kal depa, Ka.0* ocrov av 
fj,tfj,rjfjLara TOVTWV Be^rjrai. Xd^w Be Brj /j,a\\ov TO ToiovBe Bio- 
pio/j,evov<; irepl avrdov BiavtceTTTeov dp 1 ecrrt TI irvp avTo e<' 

5 eavTov teal TrdvTa, Trepl wv del Xeyo^iev ourw? avTa tcaO' avTa C 
ovTa etcao-Ta, r; ravTa, airep teal /3A,7ro/iez/ ocra re d\\a Bid TOV 
o-w/iaro? alo-0av6fj,eOa, [Aova <rrl TotavTrjv e-^ovra d\ij6eiav, a\\a 
Be OVK eo~Ti Trap-j. raOra ovBa/J,f) ovBa/Acas, dX\,d fiaTTjv eicdo~TOT 
elval Ti <j>afiev elSo? eKaarov VOTJTOV, TO Be ovBev ap 1 tfv Tr\rjv 

10 Xoyo9 ; ovTe ovv Brj TO Trapbv aicpiTOV Kal dBitcaa-Tov d(f)evra d^iov 
<j)dvai Biio-^vpi^6fjievov e^etv ourw?, OVT eTrl Xcyov parcel Trapep- 
yov d\\o fjbr,ico<; eVe///SX?7Teozr el Bt ri? opo? 6pio-0el<; /ieya? Bid D 
^pa-^ewv (fraveir}, TOVTO p,d\io-T e^KatpiwraTov Devoir av. wBe 
ovv T-qv 7' ftr)V ai;T09 TiOefiai -fyfjfyov' el p*v vovs teal Sofa dXrjOr/s 

15 eaTOV Bvo yew), TravTaTraaiv elvai Kaff avTa raOra, avaiaQr\Ta 
v<fi rjiiwv eiBrj, voov/jueva JJLOVOV el B\ w? TIO~L <fiaivTai, B6a 
d\r)0rj<; vov Bia<j)epei TO fj,r)Bev, TrdvO* OTCOCT av Bid TOV cr&j^iaro? 
alo~dav6fji,eda, OeTeov {3e/3aioraTa. Bvo Brj \etcTeov etceivw, BIOTI E 
^w/oi? yeyoi'aTov dvop,oi(a<; re ey^eTOv. TO fjuev yap avTwv Bid 

20 8tSa^/7<?, TO 8' VTTo TreiOovs rjjjilv eyyiyveTai" /cal TO /j,ei> del /ier' 
s \oyov, TO Be a\o<yov Kal TO fj,ev dtclvrjTov ireiOol, TO Be 

yrjv 8t: yrjv re A. -3 S^x^ai : S^xerai H typographi culpa. 

: 5iopio/j.tvots S. 

3. (ii|it](iaTa TOVTWV] \.e.TovotffTiv n. Siwrxvpijoiwvov ?X tv ovrws] It is 
arjp and TOV o ten yr/. not often that Plato addresses himself to 

4. dp &TTI TI irvp] When we say prove the existence of the ideas ; the 
the vvodox'n receives the fj-i^p-a. of fire, mere fact that it is impossible'to find any 
we are assuming the existence of an stable reality or basis of knowledge in 
essential idea of fire: it is now time to the material world is sufficient warrant for 
justify this assumption. The list of ideas affirming the existence of the immaterial. 
in the Timaeus includes, in addition to Here the existence of ideas stands or falls 
ideas of living creatures, only the ideas with the distinction between knowledge 
of fire air water and earth : see Intro- and true opinion. Compare the discus- 
duction 33. Presently in the words sion in Republic 476 E 480 A, also Men o 
eldos eKdffTov voifrbv we are to understand 97 A foil. In the Phaedo a different line 
by ^Kdtrrov only every class naturally is taken, the existence of the ideas being 
determined, ruv 6irb<ra <f>vcrfi. deduced from av6ift,vqffi%. 

9. TO 8i ovS^v ap' -f\v tr\-f\v Xo-yos] 18. fltr&v ptpaiorara] i.e. we must 

By \6-yos Plato means a mental concept, or accept them for the truest realities that 

universal : the question is in fact between exist, however fleeting and mutable they 

Sokraticism and Platonism ; that is to may be. For if there are no ideas, par- 

say, between conceptualism and idealism. ticulars are more real than the \6yoi, 

E] TIMAIO2. 181 

of it. That part of it which is enkindled from time to time 
appears as fire, and that which is made liquid as water, and as 
earth and air such part of it as receives the likenesses of these. 

But in our inquiry concerning these we must deliver a 
stricter statement. Is there an absolute idea of fire, and do all 
those absolute ideas exist to which in every case we always 
ascribe absolute being ? Or do those things which we actually 
see or perceive with any other bodily sense alone possess such 
reality ? and is it true that there are no manner of real existences 
beyond these at all, but we talk idly when we speak of an in- 
telligible idea as actually existent, whereas it was nothing but a 
conception ? Now it does not become us either to dismiss the 
present question unjudged and undecided, simply asserting that 
the ideas exist, nor yet must we add to our already long dis- 
course another as long which is subordinate. But if we could 
see our way to a great definition couched in brief words, that 
would be most seasonable for our present purpose. Thus then 
do I give my own verdict : if reason and true opinion are of two 
different kinds, then the ideas do surely exist, forms not per- 
ceptible by our senses, the objects of thought alone ; but if, as 
some hold, true opinion differs nothing from reason, then all 
that we apprehend by our bodily organs we must affirm to be 
the most real existence. Now we must declare them to be two, 
because they are different in origin and unlike in nature. The 
one is engendered in us by instruction, the other by persuasion ; 
the one is ever accompanied by right understanding, the other is 
without understanding; the one is not to be moved by per- 

which are merely formed from observa- lines enclose a space. It will be observed 

tionofthem: but if the ideas exist, then that the difference between knowledge 

\6yoi are more real than particulars, be- and opinion rests here upon the same 

cause the former are the intellectual, the reasoning as the final rejection of the 

latter only the sensible images of the claims of a\i)0r)s Sofa in Theaetetns 201 

ideas : cf. Phaedo 99 E. A c, where Sokrates, after showing that 

19. \copXs yeyova.TOV dvopoCcos T 2\- a jury may be persuaded by a skilful ad- 

TOV] They are of diverse origin, because vocate to hold a right opinion on a case 

one springs from instruction and the other the facts of which they do not know, 

from persuasion; of diverse nature, be- concludes his argument thus: OVK a.v, u> 

cause one is immovable by persuasion, <f>i\f, ef 75 ravrbv ?Jj> 56et re dXijtfjjj nal 

the other yields to it. You may persuade ^TTIOTTJ/UI;, 6p9a ITOT' ay SIMKTTTJS airpos 

a man that pinchbeck is gold, but you (So^a^tv dvfv fTriorj/yiu/s ' vvv 5t toiKtv \\o 

never can persuade him that two straight TI fKdrepov thai. 


[SI E 

Kal TOV fiev iravra avBpa fiere^eii' (frareov, vov Be 
vs, dvffputirwv Be <yero9 ftpa'xy n. TOITOJV Be OVTCOS e^ovTwv 
6/jLo\.oyr}Tov ev fjt,ev elvai TO Kara ravra eZSo<? e%ov, dyewrjTov Kal 52 A 
dvw\0pov, ovre et? eavTo elaBe^of^evov aXXo aXXodev ovre avro et? 
5 aXXo trot lov, doparov Be Kal aXX&>9 (ivaladrjrov, TOVTO o Brj 1/0770-45 
TTKTKOTreiv TO o' 6/j,(avvfiov 'bpoicv re eVeu/<p BevTepov, 
yevvijTov, Tre^opij/Jievov del, yvyvopevov re ev TIVI TOTTW 


av 76J/05 v TO 


HSZ. sed cf. Phaedr. 245 D. 

7 irf<t>opr]nvoi> : 

i . irdvra oivSpa |MTe\iv] cf. Thcae- 
tctus 206 D. 

4. OVT avro tls dXXo iroi lov] Here 
we have a perfectly unmistakable asser- 
tion of the solely transcendental existence 
of the ideas. The difficulties raised a- 
gainst the doctrine of immanent ideas in 
Parmenides 131 A are fatal and insur- 
mountable. From that time forth napov- 
ala and fj.fdeis (in connexion with avrb 
KO.&' avra fISr)) disappear from Plato's vo- 
cabulary, and fj.lfj.r)ffis takes their place. 
It may be added that the previous words 
oifre eis eavrb elffSfxofntvov aXXo a\\o6tv 
would seem enough in themselves to dis- 
pose of Zeller's theory of particulars in- 
herent in the ideas. 

8. 8or| fur' oUrihfows] Cf. 28 A, 
where a\6yov is added. 

9. fit Tt)s X"P as * 6 ^J Thus then we 
have materiality in its ultimate analysis 
reduced to space or extension. It may 
now be desirable to scrutinise Plato's con- 
ception a little more closely. First then as 
to the relation of x^P - t the absolute in- 
telligence and to finite intelligences. Ab- 
solute vovs or ^vx!n evolves itself into the 
form of a multitude of finite intelligences. 
For these it is a necessity of their nature 
that they should apprehend, qua finite, un- 
der certain unalterable forms, which we 
call time and space. Therefore whatever 
they perceive, they perceive somewhere. 
But this somciohere is relative to them and 
purely subjective (for we know that Plato's 


Herakleiteanism so far as concerns the 
region of sensibles was complete). All 
sensible perceptions then have no ex- 
istence except in the consciousness of the 
percipient. But the law which binds par- 
ticular \f/vxal to apprehend in this mode is 
immutable and eternal: hence space must 
be eternal; for ^VXT) must exist not only 
in the mode of unity but in the mode 
of plurality, in the form of limited souls. 
There must then always be finite intelli- 
gences percipient of a material universe 
existing in space. So far then as we con- 
fine our view to the relation of the ma- 
terial universe to the finite percipients, 
we find Plato's position to be a form of 
subjective idealism. But as soon as we 
consider the relation of finite percipients 
and their perceptions to the absolute in- 
telligence, we shall find that the subjec- 
tive is merged in an absolute idealism. 
For these percipients and percepts with 
the law which binds them to perceive 
and be perceived in this mode, though 
regarded as individuals they are severally 
transient and subject to time and space, 
yet regarded as a whole constitute one 
element in the eternal and spaceless pro- 
cess of thought, the element of Oarrtpov. 
And thus are material phenomena said to 
be /junri/jLaTa TUV &VTUV : they are percep- 
tions existing in the consciousness of finite 
intelligences, which perceptions are the 
mode in which finite intelligences, acting 
through the senses, apprehend the ideas 

52 A] 



suasion, the other yields to persuasion ; true opinion we must 
admit is shared by all men, but reason by the gods alone and a 
very small portion of mankind. This being so, we must agree 
that there is first the unchanging idea, unbegotten and imperish- 
able, neither receiving aught into itself from without nor itself 
entering into aught else, invisible, nor in any wise perceptible 
even that whereof the contemplation belongs to thought. Second 
is that which is named after it and is like to it, sensible, created, 
ever in motion, coming to be in a certain place and again from 
thence perishing, apprehensible by opinion with sensation. And 
the third kind is space everlasting, admitting not destruction, but 

as existing in infinite intelligence. The 
phenomena are material symbols of ideal 
truths: and it is only by these symbols 
that a finite intelligence, so far as it acts 
through the senses, can apprehend such 

Plato's identification of iheviroSoxy with 
Xwpa arises from the absolute &Tra0eia of 
the former. The manner of approaching 
it may perhaps be most readily seen in the 
following way. Let us take any material 
object, say a ball of bronze. Now every 
one of the qualities belonging to the 
bronze we know to be due to the nlfnjua. 
which informs the viroSox'f;' therefore to 
reach the uTroSox^j we must abstract, one 
after another, all the attributes which be- 
long to the bronze. When these are 
stripped away, what have we remaining? 
simply a spherical space of absolute va- 
cancy. The viroSoxT] then, as regards the 
bronze ball, is that sphere of empty space. 
But still this void sphere is something; 
because it is defined by the limits of the 
air surrounding it : it is in fact a sphere of 
emptiness. But now suppose, instead of 
abstracting the qualities from the bronze 
alone, we abstract them from the whole 
universe and all its contents: then we 
have vacancy coextensive with the uni- 
verse. But mark the difference. The 
empty sphere we could speak of as some- 
thing, because it was the interval between 
the limits of the surrounding air. But 
our universal vacancy there is nothing to 

limit, there is nothing to be contrasted 
with it to give it a differentia, it is va- 
cancy undefined : that is to say, it is just 
nothing at all. Thus we see that space 
pure and simple is an abstract logical 
conception ; extension without the exten- 
ded is nothing, for space can no more ex- 
ist independently of the things in it than 
time can exist without events to measure 
it. Thus in its most abstract significance 
X^P a is the eternal law or necessity con- 
straining pluralised fox^ to have its per- 
ceptions under the form we call space : 
since then foxy does, and therefore must, 
evolve itself under this form and not an- 
other, x^P a ultimately represents the law 
that fox^l shall pluralise itself. 

Between Plato's x^P a an d Aristotle's 
v\rj the only difference physically seems 
to me to lie in the superior distinctness 
and definiteness of Plato's conception : it 
was the intense vividness of Plato's in- 
sight that led him to the identification 
of the substrate with space. Aristotle, 
whose V\TI is taken bodily from Plato, 
ought to have made the same identifica- 
tion: that he did not do so is due to 
the mistiness which pervades his whole 
thought as compared with Plato's. 

A few words are demanded by Aris- 
totle's reference to the Platonic theory 
in physica IV ii 2<>9 b n. Aristotle there 
affirms that Plato identifies the /tera- 
XtjvTiKiiv with x^pa, but that he gives one 
account of the /teTaXrprriKii' in the 7'i- 

1 84 


[52 B- 

e'Bpav Be irapexov ocra e%ei yevecriv Tratriv, avro Be per dvaia-Orj- B 
via? dirrov \oyio-/J.q) nvl v60q>, /j,6yis Tna-rov 777)09 o Brj Kal 
oveipoTToXov/jLev ySXeTroi/re? Ka'i (fxifiev dvaytcaiov elval TTOV TO ov 
airav ev TIVI TOTTW /cat Kare^ov XP av Tlv( i> r Be fJir/r ev yfj 

5 fjujTe TTOV KCLT ovpavov ovBev elvai. ravra Br) Trdvra teal TOVTWV 
d\\a a'Se\0a /cat Trepl rrjv avirvov /cat d\T)0(2<; (j)v<riv VTrdp-^ovaav 
TUTTO Tai/TT/9 T^? oveipai^eax; ov Svvarol <yiyvo/j,eda eyepOevres Bio- C 
pityfievoi rd\r)6e<f \eyeiv, eJ? eiKovi, fj,ev, eTretVep 01}$ avro TOUTO, 
efi o5 jeyovev, eavrrjs eVriV, erepov Se rivo<j del <j>epeTat, <j>dvTacrfj,a, 

10 Bid ravra ev erepy Trpovrjicei rivl I yi<yve<r0ai, overlap a/zco? 76 TTW? 
dvTe%ofj,wr)V, r) fJMjBev TO TrapaTrav avrrjv elval, rut Be OVTWS ovn 
ySo^^o? o Bi aV/JtySeta? d\i)0r)<i \oyos, &5? ea>? dv ri TO pev d\\o rj, 
TO Be d\\o, oiBeTepov ev ovBerepy TTOTC yevopevov ev djj,a rav-rov 
KOI Bvo yevrja-ecrdov. 

13 yevtt/JLfvov : yeyfvij/j.^vov HSZ. 

waetis, another fv TOIS Xeyo/u^ois &ypd- 
<f>ots d6y/j.a<riv. What the account in the 
&ypa.<f>a. Sbytiara was, Aristotle does not 
tell us ; presently however he says, 2O9 b 
34, nXdrwrt fjifrroi \KTOV, el Set irap- 
6/c^ctJ'Tas elireiv, did ri owe iv roirif TO, 
61877 Kal 01 api0(j.ol, efaep ri> fj.e6tKTiKov 6 
T&TTOS, efre TOU fj.eyA\ov Kal TOV fUKpov 
JJTOS TOV fieOtKTiKov efre T^S CXijs, uffirep 
iv T(f Ti/jLaty ytypafav. Now as to this 
airopia, it may be observed that it does 
not affect Plato at all : by the time his 
theory of x^P a was worked out, the 
doctrine of /ue'flefis was abandoned : Aris- 
totle has in fact no right to apply to the 
OjroSoxr; the terms neOeKTixbv, /teroXijTr- 
riKov, in relation to the ideas. Next it 
will be evident to any one who reads the 
whole discussion in the physica that the 
object of Aristotle's inquiry is a purely 
physical one, what is roVos? meaning 
by TOTTOS the place in which any object 
is situate, which he ultimately defines 
to be TO ir^paj TOV jrepi^xot'Tos (7u>/iaToj. 
This has evidently nothing in the world 
to do with the metaphysical question of 
the Timaeus : yet Aristotle makes as 
though it were the same. Zeller is per- 
fectly just in his criticism (platonische 
Studien p. 212); 'wahrend also Platon 

ini Timaus die Frage aufwirft : was ist 
die Materie? und darauf antwortet : der 
Raum ; so fragt Aristoteles : was ist der 
Raum? und lasst Platon darauf ant- 
worten : die Materie'. 

i. (xer avaKrOtjcrCas airrov XoYrn<3 
nvl v60a>] None of our senses can inti- 
mate to us the existence or nature of 
space ; it is attained only by an effort 
of logical analysis, Xoyw/xy. Yet space 
is no real existence; therefore it cannot 
be the object of reason properly so called, 
which deals with ideal truth. Plato says 
then it is reached by a kind of bastard 
reasoning, which is indeed a purely 
mental process, unaided by the senses, 
yet distinct from the true activity of the 
soul when she is engaged on her proper 
objects of cognition. It is, as I have 
said, the anomaly of these conditions from 
which the obscurity of the subject arises. 
The compiler of the Timaeus Locrus 
(94 B) seeks to explain vbdy by the words 
T<fJ fj-T^TTU KO.T' evOvupiav voTjffOai. dXXi /car" 

i. fioyis irurr<5v] TriVm is the word 
used in the sixth book of the Republic 
to denote the mental ira0r}fj.a which deals 
with sensible objects. Space then is /uo^ts 
oV, because, although it is the mode 



affording place for all things that come into being, itself appre- 
hensible without sensation by a sort of bastard reasoning, hardly 
matter of belief. It is with this in view that dreaming we say 
that all which exists must be in some place and rilling some 
space, and that what is neither on earth nor in heaven anywhere 
is nought. All these and many kindred fancies have we even 
concerning that unsleeping essence and truly existing, for that 
by reason of this dreaming state we become impotent to arouse 
ourselves and affirm the truth ; namely, that to an image it 
belongs, seeing that it is not the very model of itself, on which 
itself has been created, but is ever the fleeting semblance of 
another, in another to come into being, clinging to existence as 
best it may, on pain of being nothing at all ; but to the really 
existent essence reason in all exactness true comes as an ally, 
declaring that so long as one thing is one and another thing 
is other, neither of them shall come to be in the other, so that 
the same becomes at once one and two. 

in which sensible things are perceived, it 
is not itself an object of sensation : it is 
an ambiguous and doubtful form, hard to 
grasp and hard to trust. 

irpds S 8if] It is this that causes 
our vague and dreamy state of mind re- 
garding existence. Because everything 
of which our senses affirm the existence 
exists in space, we rashly assume that 
all things which exist exist in space, and 
that what is not somewhere is nothing. 
For we are held fast in the thraldom of 
our own subjective perceptions, and sup- 
pose, as dreamers do, that the visions 
within our own consciousness are ex- 
ternal realities. It must be remembered 
that Plato was the very first who had any 
real conception of immaterial existence. 

6. TTJV avirvov] i.e. the region of 
objective truth, which we apprehend 
with our waking faculties, that is to say, 
by pure reason unhampered by sensa- 
tion. We do not conceive of the ideal 
world as it really is, independent of all 
conditions of time and space. 

8. hrtiirtp ovS' avri TOVTO] I be- 
lieve the true construction of these words 

has escaped all the editors and translators, 
who are consequently in sore straits 
what to make of tavrris. The construc- 
tion seems to me to be a very simple and 
very Platonic <TXW a "7>os T0 vnv-a-wbuevov. 
What is meant by avrb TOVTO <j> $ y- 
yovev ? of course the irapd5eiytJ.a, and the 
whole phrase governs eayr^j just as if 
Trapa.dfiy/j.0. had been written : ' since it 
is not the original-upon-which-it-is-mo- 
delled of itself. 

10. 4v tT^pw Tivf| Since the image is 
not identical with the type, it must be 
manifested in some mode external to the 
type, that it may be numerically different. 
This external mode is what we term 
space. Space then is that which differ- 
entiates the image from the idea and 
thereby enables the former to exist, oi>- 
crlas ci/u.w<r7^7rwj dvTfxo^vi). It is a 
dubious kind of existence that is in space : 
but, such as U is, it is owing to space : 
for did not space exist, nothing would 
remain but the idea : and since the image 
cannot be in that, it could not be at all. 

13. oi38repov tv ovStrepw] Here 
again we have a distinct repudiation of 

1 86 


[52 D 

XIX. Ouro9 fiev ovv 8t] Trapd rrjt 6/4779 \fr>')(f)ov XoyiaOels ev 
K<f>a\atG) SeSoaday \6yo<j, ov re Kal ^capav Kal yevecriv elvai, rpia 
Tpivf}, Kal TTplv ovpavov 'yevecrOat' TTJV Be 8rj 'yevea'ecix; riOtjvrjv 
vypai.vofjievrjv Kal Trvpov/jievrjv Kal ra? 7179 re Kal depot /zop<>a? 
5 Se^ofjievijv, Kal 'ocra a\\a TOUTOI? TrdBrj ^vveTrerai 7rti<r'%ov<rav, 
TravroSaTrrjv fiev ISeiv $>aivecr6ai, Sid Se TO /*;$' OJJLOIWV Svvdfieoav E 
icroppoTrwv fjL7ri7r\acr0ai icasr 1 ovSev avrrjt laroppOTretv, JXX' 
Trdvrrj TaXavTov/jievrjv creieaOai jj,ev VTT' eKeivwv avrrfv, 
5' av irdXiv eKeiva creieiv rd Se Kivov/J,eva aXXa aXXo<re 
10 del <^epecr0ai SiaKpivo/jieva, axnrep ra VTTO rwv ifkoKavatv re Kal 
irepl TYJV rov airov KaOapcriv (reiofieva Kal dva\tK- 
rd p,ev TTVKvd Kal fiapea aXX?;, rd 8e /j,avd Kal Kov<j>a elf 53 A 

3 rrjv 5 5i} : 77 omittunt ASZ. 5 d!XXa TOUTOIS : TOVTOIS aXXa S. 7 ffjLirl- 

i: t/j,irifjLir\a.ff()ai A. n ava\iK/j.wfj.fva : dva\iKvt!)/>apr.A.S. dnKfi.wfj.eva. If. 

and fro over its whole expanse. And 
thus too it sways in turn the things that 
arise in it and sifts them, so that the 
lighter bodies fly off to one region, and 
the heavier settle in another. Thus, even 
in the rudimentary state, wherein without 
the working of intelligence they would 
have been, the different bodies tend to 
occupy different regions in space ; and 
yet more, when all is ordered by intelli- 
gence for the best, as we affirm to be the 
truth. And now we must set forth the 
order and generation of them. 

1. XoYi<r6ls...X6-yos] Compare 34 A 
Xo-yio>i<}j Geov vepl rbv voTf tff&fj.(vov Ocbv 

2. rpa Tpixip] This seems to mean 
no more than ' three things with three 
distinct natures': cf. 80 E rpia TOJYTJ 

y r r /vJ 

ifrvXT)* & W"'' ttS'n KartpKiffTat. Of course 
this triad is not in any way to be con- 
founded with the former triad of ravrbv 
0a.Ttpov and ovyta. 

3. Kal irplv ovpavov yv&r6ai] This, 
it need hardly be said, is again to be 
taken logically : these three are prior in 

6. pj9' opiofwv SvvafJLCwv] The mani- 
fold bodies which are generated in space 
have most diverse and unequal forces, 
and inequality is the parent of motion, as 

the old doctrine of irapovvia. That 
doctrine affirmed that the idea existed 

(1) in its own independent nature, 

(2) inherent in the particulars. The 
latter mode is now declared to be im- 
possible for the plain reason that things 
cannot be two and one at the same time, 
nor can the same thing be at once 
original and copy. If the copy were 
inherent in the original, or the original 
in the copy, the difference between them 
would be lost ; and we should once more 
be reduced to a bare denial of the ex- 
istence of the material world. It will 
be observed that the rejection of /thefts 
is here based upon a different ground 
from that taken up in the Parmenides, 
although the criticism in that dialogue 
remains perfectly valid. We see then 
the truth of Aristotle's statement in 
metaph. I vi that Plato was led, in 
opposition to the Pythagoreans, to place 
the ideas irapa, ra alffd^ra through his 
logical speculations, did T-TJV Iv TOIS \6yois 


52 D 53 c, c. xix. All the universe 
then is divided into Being Space and 
Becoming, these three. And space, re- 
ceiving the forms that enter in, and being 
thereby filled with unbalanced forces, is 
nowhere in equipoise but ever swaying to 

53 A] 



XIX. Such then is the statement for which I give my 
sentence, as we have briefly reasoned it out: that there are 
Being and Space and Becoming, three in number with threefold 
nature, even before the heavens were created. And the nurse 
of becoming, being made liquid and fiery and putting on the 
forms of earth and air, and undergoing all the conditions that 
attend thereupon, displays to view all manner of semblances ; 
and because she is filled with powers that are not similar nor 
equivalent, she is at no part of her in even balance, but being 
swayed in all directions unevenly, she is herself shaken by the 
entering forms, and by her motion shakes them again in turn : 
and they, being thus stirred, are carried in different directions 
and separated, just as by sieves and instruments for winnowing 
corn the grain is shaken and sifted, and the dense and heavy 
parts go one way, and the rare and light are carried to a different 

we are informed in 58 A. Thus a vi- 
bratory motion is set up throughout the 
whole extent of the virodoxrj and commu- 
nicated to the objects contained in it, 
which are thereby sifted as by a winnow- 
ing machine. This vibration of the viro- 
SOXTJ and the irlXijcri.* hereafter to be 
mentioned are the two most important 
physical forces in Plato's scheme ; nearly 
all the processes of nature being due to 
them in one way or another. 

9. K\.vov\Uvi\v 8" a3 irdXii/ IKUVO, 
<riiv] What Plato means by this ac- 
tion and reaction existing between the 
tTrodoxv and its contents may thus be 
explained. If we abstract every sort of 
determination from sensuous perception, 
the residuum is space pure and simple. 
Now this, being without content, can of 
course have no motion. But once it is 
determined by the elfftovra Kal tirvra, 
motion becomes possible ; so that it is 
from these that the \nrooox~n receives mo- 
tive power. On the other hand the motion 
thus initiated has to obey the law of exist- 
ence in space: i.e. (i) it is a <f>opd, or 
motion in respect of place, (2) it sifts the 
clivers objects into different regions. Mo- 
tion then begins with the dviovra. Kal 

Qiov-ra, but once begun it is controlled 
by the law of the viroSoxri. In starting 
motion with the daiov-ra. Kal Quovra Plato 
distinctly intimates that there is no inde- 
pendent force in matter : therefore the 
ir\avtiifj^vrj atria cannot be regarded as an 
independent principle of causation. 

10. irXoKavov] This was a kind of 
wicker sieve used for winnowing. Plato 
may have got the hint for his sifting mo- 
tion from Demokritos : compare a frag- 
ment given by Sextus Empiricus adv. 
math. VII 117, 118 Kal yap f$a 6/j.o- 
yevtffi fyoiffi %vvay{\dTai, ws irfptffTfpal 
irepiffTeprjffi Kal ytpavoi yepdvoiffi, Kal tirl 
T&V d\\tav a\6y<av. werairrwj Si Kal wtpl 
Tuiv dij/irxtav , Kardirep bpijv irdprTi tiri re 

irapa ryffi Ki//narary^<rt ^(piStav SKOV ply 
yap irapa rbv TOV KOffKlvov o"ivov 3ia/cpiTt/cc2s 
<paKol fjifra <paK<3v raffffovrai Kal KptOal 
fj.fTa KpiOtuv Kal irvpol /J.era irvpuv SKOV 
8 Kara rr\v TOV Kvparos Klvrj<rii> at ptv 

^T70ies e/j TOP avrbv TOTTOV rrjffi 
udtovrai, al dt irepuptptes rrjat. 

i' ws a.v ^waywyo 
TUV irprjyuaTuv TT)S tv TOVTOHTI o/ 
Cf. Diogenes Laertius ix 3r, 32. As 
Mr Heath observes (Journal of Philology 

1 88 


[53 A- 

CTepav ta <f>ep6fj,eva eSpav Tore OVTW TO. rerrapa fblf 
VTTO Trjs B%afj,6VT)s, Kt,vov/jLevr)<; aur/;? olov opydvov aeicfjibv Trape- 
^OI/TO?, ra /j.ev dvo/j.oioTaTa TrXetcrroi/ aura a</>' avTwv opi^eiv, 
Ta 8" o/iotorara //.aXtcrra et? raurof ^vvwdelv Bio By Kal 

5 raOra a\Xa a\X?;y i<r%eiv, irplv Kal TO TTCLV e% atTwv B 
<yevea-0ai. Kal TO ftev Bij TT/JO TOVTOV TrdvTa raOr' ex iv a ^ 
Kal a/A6Tpct)?' ore 8' eTre^eipelTO Koa-/j,elcr0ai TO rrdv, Trvp TrpwTov B 
Kal vBwp Kal yfjv Kal depa, i^yi) [lev e^oj/ra avT&v arra, Travrd- 
Traat 76 fjbrjv BiaKeifJieva wcnrep et/co? X eiv a7rav > oTav aTrfj 

10 0eo?. OVTO) Bn rare Tred>VKOTa raOra TTO^TOV Biea-vrjuaTio~aTO 

'IT I /v ' 

re /cat dpidfAois. TO Be y SvvaTov w? /cc/XXicrra dpia-Ta re e 
OUTW? exovTQJV TOV deov avTa ^vvia-Tavai, irapd TrdvTa rjpuiv a>9 
aet roOro \eyo/jievov \)Tcapyj?rw vvv S' ovv TTJV BiaTa^iv avT<av eVt- 
XeiprjTeov Kd<7Tcov Kd\ ryevtcriv drjdei \6 r yw Trpos u/ia? Br)\ovv, aXXa C 
15 jdp eVet /Ltere^ere rwi' ara TraiBevaiv oBoov, Bi wv evfaiKWcrOat, 
ra Xeyo/iei/a dvdjKr), ^vve^ecrde. 

frjv Kal dtpa : yijv Kal atpa /cat vdwp S. 
14 drjdft : aX^el corr. A. 

: ea/x.ej/77s ASZ. 8 vdup Ka 

avrwv drra : airruv avrd A. 

vin p. 162), ' it is remarkable that Plato 
sees the dynamical reason of the thing ; 
while Democritus draws the fanciful and 
false inference that " like seeks its like ".' 

i. virA TTJS 8eo,|j^vT)s] Stallbaum is un- 
questionably wrong in reading de%a/j.e>>rjs, 
which means a cistern and nothing else : 
cf. Critias 117 B. 

5. irplv teal TO irav] Plato's meaning 
I take to be as follows. From the plural- 
isation of Being as such (the nature of 
Being remaining undefined) we get only 
the necessity of material perceptions : 
and all that is thereby necessarily in- 
volved is the existence of matter in some 
chaotic or rudimentary form. But when 
Being is defined to be Intelligence, the 
pluralisation of it must involve the order- 
ing of matter according to some intelli- 
gent design. This metaphysical meaning 
Plato clothes in a mythical form borrowed 
from Anaxagoras. In this chapter he 
gives us a completion of Anaxagoras and 
a polemic against Demokritos. Anax- 
agoras, though he postulated vote as a 
motive cause, failed to represent the uni- 

verse as the orderly evolution of intelli- 
gence everywhere working eTri TO [3{\Tia- 
rov : he confined himself to giving an 
account of the physical agencies through 
which he supposed vous to work. Plato, 
in explaining these physical agencies, is 
careful to insist that they are merely sub- 
sidiary to the final cause : the real expla- 
nation of each thing is to be found in its 
motive. Demokritos held that the pre- 
sent order of the universe was the effect 
of a blind force working without intel- 
ligence, which by fortuitous collisions 
and combinations formed a symmetrical 
system. This view Plato controverts, 
urging that such fortuitous conjunctions 
could not amount to more than a rudi- 
mentary and chaotic condition of material 
existence : form, arrangement, symmetry 
imply intelligence in the motive power. 
Properly interpreted then, matter as it is 
irplv yevfoOai rov obpavov is matter evolved 
on the Demokritean plan as contrasted 
with the Platonic. Plato does not mean 
that there was a time when matter existed 
in this form. 

c] T1MAI02. 189 

place and settle there. Even so when the four kinds are shaken 
by the recipient, which by the motion she has received acts as 
an instrument for shaking, she separates the most dissimilar 
elements furthest apart from one another, and the most similar 
she draws chiefly together ; for which cause these elements had 
different regions even before the universe was ordered out of 
them and created. Before that came to pass all these things 
were without method or measure ; but when an essay was being 
made to order the universe, first fire and water and earth and air, 
which had certain vestiges of their own nature, yet were alto- 
gether in such a condition as we should expect for everything 
when God is not in it, being by nature in the state we have said, 
were then first by the creator fashioned forth with forms and 
numbers. And that God formed them to be most fair and perfect, 
not having been so heretofore, must above all things be the 
foundation whereon our account is for ever based. But now the 
disposition of each and their generation is what I must strive to 
make known to you in speech unwonted : but seeing ye are no 
strangers to the paths of learning, through which my sayings 
must be revealed to you, ye will follow me. 

8. O.VTWV &TTO] This is an obviously ever been propounded. 

certain correction of the senseless a.vr<Z,v 15. TWV icard iraCSevo-iv 68iov] Pro- 

avra of the mss. Fire and the rest, be- bably with especial reference to geometry, 

fore the universe was framed, that is in without some knowledge of which Plato's 

a universe framed on the Demokritean theory could not be comprehended. bSwv 

theory had some incipient indications of is here practically equivalent to fieSodwi', 

their present nature, but only in an incho- a sense in which it is not unfrequently 

ate condition. found ; cf. Phaedrus 16$ B OVKOVV rbv 

9. S-rov dirjj nvds Otos] i. e. in a fj.^\\ovra r^x" 7 !" pi>ropiK^v ptrievai wpurov 
world which is not the evolution of Ofos, Set ravra 65$ Si-yprjcrffat : and Cratylus 
but the result of mere chance and coinci- 425 B aXXws 3 trweipeiv /J.T) <JMU\OV fj Kal 
dence. ov Ka.0' oSov. 

10. t8r T Kal ap i0(j.o Is] 'with forms 53 c 55 C, c. xx. This is the genera- 
and measures '; i.e. with bodies definitely tion of fire air water and earth. All these 
qualified and quantified. apiff/j.ol has not are solid bodies, and solid bodies are 
the meaning it so frequently bears in bounded by plane surfaces. Every recti- 
Aristotle, ' the ideal numbers ' ; for this linear plane surface can be divided into 
never occurs in the Platonic writings. triangles: the triangle then is the primary 

14. dijOti Xo-ycp] Plato's expression is plane figure. The triangles which we 

fully justified. When we come to exa- affirm to be the fundamental form of all 

mine his atomic theory (if so it may be matter are two in number, the rectangular 

called), we shall find it exceedingly pecu- isosceles, and the rectangular scalene 

liar and totally unlike any other that has which is obtained by bisecting an equi- 


[53 c- 

Tlpoarov [lev Brj trvp Kal yrj Kal vBwp Kal dr/p on <r(a- 
d ecrTt, Brj\6v TTOV Kal rcavri' TO Be rov awfiaro<j eISo9 rtav 
Kal /8a#09 %ei' TO Be /Sa#o9 av Tracra dvdyKtj rrjv erriTreBov rrepi- 

5 ffvvearrjKf. rd Be rplywva rrdvra e'/c Bvotv dp%erai rpiywvoiv, D 
/JLLCIV fjiev opurjv eyovros eKarepov ywviav, Ta9 Be o^eia9* (av TO 
fjiev erepov eKarepwOev e^et /Mepo9 ywvia? opOrjs 7T\evpai<f icrat9 
Bir)pr]iJ,evT)$, TO S' erepov dvi<roi<$ dvicra fJ>epr) vevefivj/jievr)*;. ravrijv 
Brj Trvpof dp^rjv Kal rdov a\\wv crcapdrcov vrroriOeiieOa Kara rov 

>o fier dvdyKrjs elKora \6yov rropevofJievoL* Ta9 8' en rovrcov dp%d<; 
dvwOev Oeof olBe Kal dvBpdov 09 av eKeivw <f)l\os y. Bel Brj \eyeiv, 
Trota /caXXtcrTa awf^ara yevoir av rerrapa, dvopoia fjuev eauTofc, E 
Bvvard Be e dX\,rj\(ov avrwv drra Bia\vo/jiva yiyveaOai. rov- 

15 Kal 7rupo9 r&v re dvd \6yov ev pecro)' roBe yap ovBevl <rvy%ci)- 
?a, Ka\\io) rovrcav opwueva aw par a elvai rrov KCL& ev 
eKaarov ov. rovr" ovv trpodv/j,r}reov, rd Bia(j>epovra Ka\\ei 
rerrapa yevij avvapnoaaaOai Kal (f>dvai rrjv rovrwv 
<pi(Tiv iKavws el\tj(f)evai. rolv Br) Bvotv rptyatvoiv TO f^ev 54 A 

5 Svoiv : dveiv S. 6 rots 5^: TO.J 5^ Suo S. 15 r65e : r'jre SZ. 

lateral triangle. From the latter the 
three elements fire air and water are 
framed : from the former earth alone. It 
follows then that while fire air and water 
can interchange and pass one into an- 
other, earth cannot pass into any of them 
nor they into it, because its base is dif- 
ferent. But since the other three are 
formed on the same triangle, they can 
interchange, when a figure formed of 
many triangles breaks up into several 
formed of fewer, or vice versa. The way 
in which the figures are formed is as fol- 
lows. Six of the primary scalenes placed 
together constitute an equilateral triangle; 
and four equilaterals form the sides of a 
regular solid, the tetrahedron or pyramid, 
which is the constituent particle of fire : 
eight such equilaterals are the sides of the 
octahedron, which is the particle of air; 
twenty equilaterals are the sides of the 
icosahedron, being the particle of water. 
These are all the forms constructed on 

the rectangular scalene. From the rect- 
angular isosceles, by placing four to- 
gether, is formed a square; and six 
squares are the sides of a fourth regular 
solid called the cube, which is the particle 
proper to earth. A fifth regular solid 
still exists, namely the dodecahedron, 
which does not form the element of any 
substance ; but God used it as a pattern for 
dividing the zodiac into its twelve signs. 

3. Tqv firiir&ov] Every solid is 
bounded by plane surfaces. Aristotle, 
in criticising the Platonic theory (see de 
caelo III i 2g8 b 33 ; de gen. et corr. I ii 
3 r 5 b 3) objects (i) that you cannot 
make solid matter out of planes, (2) that 
there are no such things as indivisible 
magnitudes. To the first objection it is 
sufficient to reply that Plato, who was 
presumably as well aware as every one 
else of the impossibility of forming solids 
by an aggregation of mathematical planes, 
does not attempt to do anything of the 

54 A] TIMAIO2. 191 

XX. In the first place, that fire and earth and water and air 
are material bodies is evident to all. Every form of body has 
depth: and depth must be bounded by plane surfaces. Now 
every rectilinear plane is composed of triangles. And all 
triangles are derived from two triangles, each having one right 
angle and the others acute: and one triangle has on each side a 
moiety of a right angle marked off by equal sides, the other 
has it divided into unequal parts by unequal sides. These 
we conceive to be the basis of fire and the other bodies, follow- 
ing up the probable account which is concerned with necessity: 
but the principles yet more remote than these are known but to 
God and to whatsoever man is a friend of God. Now we must 
declare what are the four fairest bodies that could be created, 
unlike one another, but capable, some of them, of being gene- 
rated out of each other by their dissolution : for if we succeed in 
this, we have come at the truth concerning earth and fire 
and the intermediate proportionals. For we will concede to 
no one that there exist any visible bodies fairer than these, each 
after its own kind. We must do our diligence then to put 
together these four kinds of bodies most excellent in beauty, 
and so we shall say that we have a full comprehension of their 

Now of the two triangles the isosceles has but one kind, 

sort : to the second, that Plato's solids vided into one or other of these by simply 

are not indivisible, but are the minutest drawing a perpendicular from one of the 

forms of organised matter which exist. angles to the opposite side. Of the rect- 

When they are broken up, they are either angular isosceles there is of course but 

reformed into another figure, or the mat- one kind ; of the rectangular scalene an 

ter of which they are composed goes on endless variety. Out of these Plato 

existing in a formless condition. There chooses as best that which is obtained 

is however a real difficulty not noticed by bisecting an equilateral triangle; the 

by Aristotle, which will be discussed on reason for this choice becomes presently 

56 D. obvious. 

4. IK Tpi/yuvwy <rvW<rrr]K] Because 10. rds 8' ri TOVTWV dpx<is] Plato 
every rectilinear plane of whatever shape will not affirm that there is any physical 
can be divided up into triangles, three dpx 7 ) which is absolutely ultimate, 
straight lines being the fewest that can 13. avTwv arra] This anticipates the 
enclose a space. correction given in 54 B of the statement 

5. IK 8voiv apxTai Tpi-yoSvoiv] All in 49 C. 

triangles are reducible to two, the rect- 15. TV rt civd Xo^ov] i.e. the mean 
angular isosceles and the rectangular proportionals, air and water, between fire 
scalene, because any triangle can be di- and earth; see 32 A. 



[54 A 

tVoo7ceXe9 [tiav ei\r)%e <pv<riv, TO Be TT polices direpavTow irpo- 
atpeTeov ovv av TWV direipwv TO fcd\\i<rTov, el /u,eXXo/iez> dpe(r6at 
Kara TpoTrov. av ovv Ti9 e^rj /cd\\iov e/cXefa/nei/09 eiirelv 619 TTJV 
TOVTUV %v(TTa(riv, eiceivos ov/c e%6po<; oav aXXa $4X09 Kparel- Tide- 
5 fj,0a o ovv TOIV TToXXoGi/ Tpiycovwv Kd\\i(rTov ev, V7rep/3dvT<; 
TaXXa, e' ov TO icr67r\evpov Tpiywvov etc Tpirov (rvve<TTr)K. BIOTI B 
Be, \6yos 7T\ift)v a\\a TO> TOVTO e^eXey^avTi ical dvevpovTi fjitj 
ovrws e%oy KCITCM <J>l\ta TO, adXa. irporjp^crdoj Br} Bvo 
e'f (av TO T TOV Trvpos teal TO, Ta)V d\\wv 0-tw/iara 

10 TO [lev arocrtfeXe?, T^ Be Tpnr\rjv KdTa Bvva/J,iv %ov 

TTJV /ieia> TT\evpdv del. TO Brj TrpoeOev dcrafyws pt]0ev vvv 
Biopia-Teov. T& yap TcTTapa jevr) Bi' d\\ij\a)v et? a'XX^Xa tyai- 
veTO irdvTa yeve<riv ex iv > OVK opdoo^; <pavTa6fjiva' ylyveTcu fiev c, 
yap etc Tcav Tpiycavcov oav irporjprjp,e6a yevrj rerrapa, Tpia fj,ev eg 

15 evb<i TOV ra? 7rXeu/5a9 dvi<rov<; e^ovro?, TO Be TerapTov ev fiovov 
ex TOV laoa-tceXovs Tpiywvov ^vvap^oaOev. OUKOVV BvvaTa TTCLVTO, 
et9 aXX?;Xa BiaXvofjueva etc TroXXcCz/ crpiicpwv o\iya fieyd\a teal 
TOvvavTiov yiyve&Oat, Ta Be Tpia olov Te f etc yap evos djravTa 

1 fie\\o/J.ei> : fj.\\otfj.ev A. 

p.'fi: 5ij A. 5^ iu\ SZ. 

7 \6yos : 6 \6yos SZ. S 6 erasit A. 
8 <j>l\ia : <t><.\la AHSZ. 

i. rd 8i irp<S|jiT]Ks] i.e. the scalene. 
irp6(j.T)Kes denotes that one side exceeds 
the other in length : the word is applied 
to almost any shape which is longer than 
it is broad; in Theadetus 148 A to a 
rectangle which is not a square; there 
and in Reptiblic 546 c to a number ex- 
pressing such a rectangle ; to a long 
vault, Laws 947 D; to the elongated 
heads of beasts, T'imaeus 91 E : or/joyytfXa 
Kal TrpofjLTJKrj = cylindrical, said of the spine, 
Timaeus 73 D. 

6. IK rpl-rov <rvvl<rn\Kt] 
i.e. the two triangles com- 
bined form a third, which is 

The extreme drjdfia. of Plato's theory 
will be at once seen by a brief com- 
parison with those of his predecessors. 
Empedokles limited the primal elements 
to four and conceived them as indefinitely 
divisible; and he treats as primary those 

which Plato says are oi/5' if <nAXa/3ip 
ctde<rii>. Anaxagoras reduces matter to 
qualitatively determinate corpuscules, in- 
finitely numerous, infinitely various, and 
infinitely divisible. The atoms of De- 
mokritos are infinite in number, in- 
definitely varying in size shape and 
weight, in other respects perfectly 
similar, and indivisible. Plato differs 
(i) in the derivation of his particles from 
his two primal triangles; (2) in limit- 
ing their varieties to four; (3) in assign- 
ing to these four certain specified geo- 
metrical forms; (4) in the peculiar con- 
ditions he imposes upon their divisibility; 
(5) in allowing two or more of the smaller 
particles to coalesce into one larger this 
is directly contrary to the view of De- 
mokritos ; (6) in allowing within limits a 
diversity of size in the primal triangles, 
Plato seeks to explain differences of 
qualities which Demokritos ascribes to 




but the scalene an endless number. Out of this infinite multi- 
tude then we must choose the fairest, if we are to begin upon 
our own principles. If then any man can tell of a fairer kind 
that he has selected for the composition of these bodies, it 
is no enemy but a friend who vanquishes us : however of 
all these triangles we declare one to be the fairest, passing 
over the rest; that namely of which two conjoined form an 
equilateral triangle. The reason it were too long to tell : but if 
any man convict us in this and find that it is not so, the 
palm is ready for him with our right good will. Let then 
two triangles be chosen whereof the substance of fire and of the 
other elements has been wrought ; the one isosceles, the other 
always having the square on the greater side three times 
the square on the lesser. And now we must more strictly define 
something which we expressed not quite clearly enough before. 
For it appeared as though all the four classes had generation 
through each other and into each other, but this appearance was 
delusive. For out of the triangles we have chosen arise four 
kinds, three from one of them, that which has unequal sides, 
and the fourth one alone composed of the isosceles triangle. It 
is not then possible for all of them by dissolution to pass 
one into another, a few large bodies being formed of many 
small, and the converse: but for three of them it is possible. 

varieties in the size and shape of the 
atoms; (7) whereas Demokritos insisted 
upon the necessity of void, Plato 
eliminates it so far as possible and makes 
no mechanical use of it; (8) though 
Plato agrees with Demokritos as to the 
sifting of like bodies into their proper 
region, he differs from him toto caelo on 
the subject of gravitation. There is 
moreover a still more fundamental pecu- 
liarity in the Platonic theory, which will 
be discussed later : see 56 D. 

10. TpiirXtjv Kurd Svvajuv] i.e. having 
the square on the longer side three times 
the square on the shorter. 

Let ABC be an equilateral triangle 
bisected by the perpendicular AD. 
Then the square on the hypotenuse 
But A 



P. T. 

or AD : DC :: ^3 : 1. 
cf. Timaeus Locrus 98 A. 

ii. rA 81} irpdo-Oev] Referring to the 
statement in 49 c that all the elements 
are interchangeable. Aristotle makes all 
four interchangeable: see for instance 
meteorologica I iii 339* 37 <f>a.^v 8t irvp 
Kal at pa Kal vdup Kal -ff\v ylveffffai ^ a\\y- 
Xwv, Kal UKaffrov tv tKaffry virapxeiv roti- 
TUV dwdfiti. 



[54 c 

7re(pvKora \v6evra)v re rwv fiei^ovcov TroXXa oyu/c/>a CK rdov av- 
rrav %V(mj(rerai, Se^o/zeva ra irpoa-^Kovra eaurot? o^/xara, Kal D 
<r/JUKpd '6rav av TroXXa Kara TO. rpiywva BiacrTrapy, yevofjievos els 
dpi0/j,os evof oytcov fj,eya d7rore\ecreiev av a\Xo elSos ev. ravra 
5 fJiev ovv \\e%da) irepl 1-779 ei9 a\\rf\.a yevecreax;' olov Be eKaarov 
avrfov yeyovev elSos Kal e cxrcov a-vpTrearovrwv apiOfitov, \e<yeiv 
av eTTOfievov eif], ap%et, Brj TO re Trpwrov elSos Kal a-fiiKpoTarov 
gvvia-rdfAevov, cnoL^elov 8' avrov TO rrjv VTroreivovo-av rfjs e\ar- 
roi/09 7rXeu/3a9 Snr\acriav %ov iirjicei' %vvSvo Se TOIOVTWV Kara 

10 Siaperpov %vvTidefJ,eva)v Kal rpi9 TOVTOV ryevopevov, ra? Biafjierpov<; E 
Kal ra? ^pa^eia^ ir\evpa<s eh ravrov <u? Kevrpov epeicrdvTwv, ev 
IcroTrKevpov rpiywvov e el; rov dpi0/j,6v ovrwv yejove' rpiycova be 
IcrcnrXevpa ^WKTrd^eva rerrapa Kara avvrpeis eTrnre&ovs ywvias 
/j-iav arepeav ymviav Troiei, T^9 dfifSKvrdr'ris rwv eTrnr&wv ywvitiov 55 A 

15 e<f>efjs ye<yovviav rotovrtov Se d7rore\eo-0eia-<av rerrdpwv irpwrov 
arepeov, o\ov vrepifyepovs Siave/JirjriKOV 619 to" ^PV Kai 

: oil <rfj.iKp& A. Kard. ri rplytava : rd. omittit A. 6 6ffuv : uv S. 

8. rf\v viroreCvovo-av] The same tri- 
angle given above, having its sides in the 
proportion i, ^3, 2. 

9. vv8vo 8f] Take two equal rect- 
angular scalenes A OF, AOE, of the 
form aforesaid, and place them so that 
their hypotenuses coincide. Thus we 

have a trapezium AFOE. In the same 
way form two other equal and similar 
trapeziums J3FOD, CEOZ), and place 
them so that in each of them the two 
sides which are the shortest sides of the 
triangles coincide severally with a similar 
side in each of the two others, FO, O, 
DO. The juxtaposition of these three 
trapeziums gives us an equilateral triangle 
ABC formed of six rectangular scalenes 
similar in all respects to the triangle ob- 

tained by bisecting ABC. For let ABC 
be an equilateral triangle, and draw the 
three perpendiculars AD, BE, CF, each 
bisecting it. Then it is easy to prove 
that the three perpendiculars intersect in 
the point O: and since in the triangle 
A OF the angle AFO is a right angle and 
the angle FAO is J of a right angle, 
therefore the angle A OF must be | of a 
right angle; and the triangle A OF is 
consequently similar to ADB, as also are 
the other five. Accordingly the juxta- 
position of six rectangular scalenes of the 
form and in the manner described will 
make up a single equilateral triangle. 

Kara Sidperpov] That is, placed so 
that the hypotenuse of one coincides 
with that of the other : the common 
hypotenuse AO of the two triangles A OF, 
AOE becomes the diagonal of the tra- 
pezium AFOE. 

ri. ls TQ.VT&V <a$ K^vrpov] i.e. at the 
point O. 

12. 4^ ? TOV cipiOfxov] It is notable 
that Plato uses six of the primary scalenes 
to compose his equilateral triangle, when 

55 A] TIMAI02. 195 

For since they all arise from one basis, when the larger bodies 
are broken up, a number of small ones will be formed from 
the same elements, putting on the shapes proper to them; 
and again when a number of small bodies are resolved into 
their triangles, they will become one in number and constitute a 
single large body of a different form. So much for their gene- 
ration into one another : the next thing will be to say what 
is the form in which each has been created, and by the com- 
bination of what numbers. We will begin with the form which 
is simplest and smallest in its construction. Its element is the 
triangle which has the hypotenuse double of the shorter side 
in length. If a pair of these are put together so that their 
hypotenuses coincide, and this is done three times, in such 
a way that the hypotenuses and the shorter sides meet in 
one point as a centre, thus one equilateral triangle has been 
formed out of the other six triangles: and if four equilateral 
triangles are combined, so that three plane angles meet in 
a point, they make at each point one solid angle, that which 
comes immediately next to the most obtuse of plane angles; 
and when four such angles are produced there is formed the first 
solid figure, dividing its whole surface into four equal and similar 

he could have done it equally well 12. Tpfywva 81 I<r6ir\vpa] Next we 
with two. Similarly he uses four rect- take four equilateral triangles thus con- 
angular isosceles to compose the square, structed each of six elementary scalenes, 
whereas he could have formed it of two. and place them so as to make a regular 
The reason is probably this: the sides tetrahedron or pyramid; each of whose 
of the primary triangles mark the lines solid angles is bounded by three planes 
along which the equilaterals are broken meeting in a point. The pyramid is the 
up in case of dissolution. Now had simplest of the regular solids, having 
Plato formed his equilaterals of two sea- four equilateral triangles for its sides, 
lenes only, it would have been left in and therefore containing 24 of the primal 
doubt whether the triangle ABC would scalenes. This is the corpuscule com- 
be broken up along the line AD, or posing fire. 

along BE, or CF. But if they are com- 14. TTJS dnpXvraTT]$] The most 

posed of six, the lines along which dis- obtuse plane angle (expressed in integral 

solution takes place is positively deter- numbers) is 1 79 degrees, one degree short 

mined ; since there is only one way in of two right angles, or a straight line, 

which six can be joined so as to form one The solid angle of a pyramid is, as we 

equilateral. The same remark applies to have seen, bounded by three equilateral 

the composition of the square. Also by triangles. The angle of an equilateral 

taking one-sixth of the equilateral, in- triangle is two-thirds of a right angle, 

stead of one-half, we get the smallest that is, 60 degrees. Therefore the angle 

element possible for our primal base. of the pyramid contains 180 degrees, or 




[55 A 

, %vvi<TTaTai. . BevTepov Be etc /j,ev rwv avrwv rpiywvwv, Kara 
Be IcroTrXevpa Tpiywva OKTW ^vcravrmv, fiLav aTrepyaa-afJbevfDv crre- 
pedv ywviav e/c rerrdpcov eTrtTreBwv ical yevoftevav e roiovrwv 
TO BevTepov av a-w^ia oi/ra><? etr^e reXo?. TO Be rplrov etc Si? 
5 e^r/KOVTa TWV crroi^elwv ^vfATrayevTaiv, crrepewv Be ywviwv Ba>- B 
, UTTO Treme eTTiTTeBcav rpvywvwv IcroTrXevpwv 7repie^ofjievr)<f 
, etACOcrt )Qa<ret9 fyov I<ro7r\evpovs Tpiycavovs yeyove. icai 
TO fj,ev Tpov aTTijXX.aKTO TWV (TTOi^eiwv TavTa yevvfjcrav TO Be 
e9 TptfWOV eyevva Trjv TOV reraproi; fyvcriv, ara rerrapa 
, et? TO KevTpov T9 6p6a<$ f/ttvfas ffvvdyov, ev lao- 
irXevpov TeTpdywvov aTrepyao-dftevov ef Be ToiavTa ^v/jLTrayevTa 
ywvias o/CTca areped? aTreTeXeo-e, Kara Tpeis eTrnreBovs op6d<s %vvap- C 
fioa~6ei<rirj<j e/cao-T^? 1 TO Be a-^r^ia TOV ^VCTTCIVTOS <rtB/LtaTo? yeyove 
Kvfli/cov, e^ 7rnre8ov<; TeTpaywvovs i<ro7r\evpov<; /3ao-et<? c^ov. IT* 
15 Be otiffifi vo'Tdo~a)S /zta? Tre/iTTTi;?, eTrt TO Tfav 6 0eb<> avrfj 

8 raOra yevvrj<rav : yevvrjuav ravra S. 

one degree more than the obtusest pos- 
sible of plane angles. 

2. I<r6ir\vpa rpC-ywva <5KTw] The 
next figure is the octahedron, the second 
regular solid, having eight equilateral 
triangular sides, and six angles, each of 
them bounded by four planes: this then 
contains 48 of the primal scalenes. This 
is the constituent corpuscule of air. 

4. TO 8i Tpfrrov] The third regular 
solid is the icosahedron, which has 
twenty sides, of the same shape as the 
former, and twelve angles, each bounded 
by five of the equilateral planes; this 
consequently contains no less than 120 
primal scalenes. This forms the element 
of water. And now the rectangular 
scalene, out of which the equilateral is 
formed, has finished its work : since 
these three are the only regular solids 
whose sides are equilateral triangles. 

g. Kara T^rrapa |vvi<rra|j^vov] The 
corpuscule of which earth is formed is 
based upon the other element, the rect- 
angular isosceles : four of which, joined 
in the manner shewn in the accompany- 

ing figure, make a square. Six of these 
squares set together form the fourth regu- 

lar solid, which is the cube, having eight 
solid angles each bounded by three planes : 
the cube then contains 24 of the ele- 
mentary isosceles. The reason why Plato 
forms his square of four instead of two 
triangles has been already suggested : it 
is obvious however that he might have 
constructed it of any number he chose: 
for by bisecting the triangle A OS we 
should obtain two precisely similar tri- 
angles, which again might be bisected into 
precisely similar triangles usque ad in- 
Jinitum. Plato however had to stop short 
somewhere in the number of triangles 
which he assigned to the square; and 
naturally enough he stopped short at 
the smallest number which gave him 




parts. The second is formed of the same triangles in sets of 
eight equilateral triangles, bounding every single solid angle by 
four planes ; and with the formation of six such solid angles the 
second figure is also complete. The third is composed of 120 
of the elementary triangles united, and of twelve solid angles, 
each contained by five plane equilateral triangles ; and it has 
twenty equilateral surfaces. And the first element, when it had 
generated these figures, had done its part : the isosceles triangle 
generated the fourth, combined in sets of four, with the right 
angles meeting at the centre, thus forming a single square. Six 
of these squares joined together formed eight solid angles, each 
produced by three plane right angles : and the shape of the 
body thus formed was cubical, having six square planes for its 
surfaces. And whereas a fifth figure yet alone remained, God 
used it for the universe in embellishing it with signs. 

determinate lines of cleavage. 

14. ?TI 8i ovo-rjs 
ir^|AirTT|s] There is in existence yet a 
fifth regular solid, the dodecahedron. 
This has twelve sides, each of which is 
an equilateral pentagon; it has twenty 
solid angles each contained by three 
planes. This is of course not based upon 
either of the elementary triangles ; nor 
is it the corpuscule of any material sub- 
stance. God, says Plato, used it for a 
pattern in diversifying the universe with 
signs: that is it served as a model for 
the twelvefold division of the zodiac. 
The writer of the Timaeus Locrus (see 
98 E rd 5 SwSeKdedpov elK6va. rov iravrbs 
tffTa<ra.To, gyyiffra crQaipas lov) is quite 
in error in supposing that the shape of 
the dodecahedron has anything to do 
with that of the universe: the spherical 
shape of the latter is the material symbol 
of the avrb ffiov. Plato was bound to 
find some significance for the only re- 
maining regular solid; and he found it 
as suggesting the twelve signs of the 
heavens. Compare Phaedo no B -jrpCirov 
fj.ti> elvai roiavTi] 1} yrj avrri Idetv, ft TIS 
avwOev 6e$To, uairep al SwdeKaffKvroi fffau- 
pai, where obviously the 'twelve-patched 

ball ' represents the duodenary division. 
There is a curious blunder in Plutarch 
quaestiones platonicae V i : <rw^/9/uo<rrai 
5 KO.I 

T&V TTpwruv aKoXfivuv 

dib Kai SOKSI rbv fadiaKbv a/tta 
Kal rbv tviavrbv a.iromfj.eiffdai TCUS Sia- 
i>o/j.cus TUV fjwipuv i<rapi9/j.ois ovffiv. Al- 
kinoos has a similar statement: this 
would involve the consequence that every 
side of the dodecahedron can be divided 
into five equilateral triangles, each con- 
sisting of six primal scalenes; an opinion 
which Stallbaum welcomes with joy, 
saying that it 'mirifice convenit' with 
the 360 degrees into which the circle is 
divided. It is perhaps strange that neither 
Stallbaum Plutarch nor Alkinoos took the 
trouble even to draw a regular pentagon 
in order to verify this theory, which is 
of course geometrically absurd : Martin 
goes so far as to give, not without sarcasm, 
a mathematical demonstration of its im- 

55 c 56 c, c. xxi. Now if the ques- 
tion be put, are there more cosmical sys- 
tems than one? the reply that there are 
an indefinite number would be a very in- 



[55 c 

XXI. <V A Bij Tt9 el Trdvra \oyi%6/j,evo<; e/i/ieX&k diropol, Trore- 
pov aTrei'pof? %pr) KOff/Jiovs elvat \eyetv rj trepan e^ovra^, TO /xei/ 
direipovs vyr/a-aiT* av 6W&>9 aTreipov TWOS elvai Boypa wv e/jiTrei- D 
pov xpewv elvaC Trorepov Be eva r) -rrevTe avrov? d\r)0eia 7re<pv- 

5 KOTO,? \eyetv Trpoo-ijKei,, fj,d\\ov av ravrrj <rra9 et/corw? BiaTroprjaai. 
TO fjiev ovv Br) Trap' rj/juav eva avrov Kara rov eiKora \6yov 7re<pv- 
Kora [Aijvvei, \\O9 Be et? d\\a TTTJ ySXe^a? erepa Bo^na-ei. KCU 
TOVTOV fiev fieOereov, ra Be yeyovora vvv TO> \6<ym yevrj Biavei- 
IMWfAev et9 Trvp real <yrjv /cal ftBcop teal depa. 777 jj,ev Br/ TO Kvfiiicdv 

10 eI8o9 B(0fji,V dfCivrfTOTaTi} yap TWV TeTrdpwv yevwv yij KOI T<UV E 

Be dvdj/crj yeyovevat, TOIOVTOV 

TO ra? y8acret9 a 

Be r re 


Tpiyoovwv inroTeOevTWV ao-^aXecrrepa /fara (j)V<riv, y TWV i 

5 TTOT post XeYeiv dat A, quod inclusum retinet H. cum SZ eieci. or<is : 
Trfij S. 7 0eds post (j.i)v6ei, addit A. uncis inclusum servat H. 8 TOVTOV : 


definite answer: but to affirm that there 
are five might be more reasonable. We 
however in conformity with our principles 
assert that there is but one. We must 
now assign our elementary solids to the 
natural substances which they severally 
compose. Earth is the most unyielding 
of the four; therefore to it we assign the 
cube as its constituent; for this is the 
most stable solid, being formed of the 
rectangular isosceles. To water, which 
next to earth is the most sluggish, we 
give the icosahedron ; and to fire, which 
is of all the most mobile, the pyramid ; 
while for air there remains the inter- 
mediate form of the octahedron. Now 
all these corpuscules are separately so 
small as to be invisible ; it is only when 
they are collected in large numbers that 
they can be seen by us: but God as- 
signed them to the four substances with 
due regard to proportion in respect of 
multitude and motion and all other 

3. dir(povs...dir6tpov] For the play 
on the word compare Philebus 1 7 E rd 6 
&ireip6v ffe tKdffTuv Kal if e/cdorois ir\T)6os 
aireipov ^/cdoTort Troiet roO <f>povelv Kal OVK 

\\6yi/J.ov oftS' i>dpi6(J.ov, S.T' OVK els apiO- 
nbv ovStva iv ovdevl irwiroTe ctortSoVra. 
Plato is at issue with Demokritos, who 
consistently with his whole physical 
theory maintained that the number of 
KOfffj-ot, was infinite : Plato is equally con- 
sistent in affirming that there is only one. 
The oddest fancy in this way is one 
ascribed by Plutarch de defectu oraculorum 
22 to Petron of Himera, who declared 
there were 183 KOCT/OIOJ, disposed in the 
form of an equilateral triangle. The 
eternal fitness of this arrangement is not 
explained by Plutarch. 

4. iroTtpov 8i tva TJ irivrt] Plato re- 
gards as a comparatively reasonable sup- 
position the view that there may be five 
Kofffjioi, because there exist in nature five 
regular rectilinear solids. Compare 
Plutarch de el apud Delphos 1 1 TroXXd 
5' oiXXa TotaCrct, %<t>-i\v eyu, irapeXOw, rbv 
IlXdruva irpocrdl-0/Ji.a.i \tyovra KOCT/J.OV fra, 
ws etirep elffl irapa TOVTOV ?Tepoi Kal /J-TJ 
/j.6vos oSros els, irevTt TOVS iravTas 6vTas 
Kal list) ir\elovas. ov ft,rjv d\\a KO.V tls 
OVTOS fiovoyevys, us oteTai Kal 'A/HOTO- 


Kal ffvvr)pfj.o<r/j,evov 



XXI. Now if any man, reflecting upon all these things, 
should fairly ask himself whether the number of cosmic systems 
is indefinite or definite, he would deem that to believe them in- 
definite was the opinion of one who thought very indefinitely on 
a matter where he ought to be most definitely informed : but 
whether we ought to say that there is but one, or that there are 
really in nature five, he might, if he stopped short there, with 
more justice feel doubtful. Our verdict declares that according 
to the probable theory it is by nature one ; another however, 
looking to some other guide, may have a different view. But 
no more of him ; let us assign the figures that have come into 
being in our theory to fire and earth and water and air. To 
earth let us give the cubical form ; for earth is least mobile 
of the four and most plastic of bodies : and that substance must 
possess this nature in the highest degree which has its bases 
most stable. Now of the triangles which we assumed as our 
starting-point that with equal sides is more stable than that 

elvai' uv o [J.v tan. yrjs, 6 S' d'Saros, rplros 
8t irvp&s, Kal Ttrapros tepos' rbv d TT^UTT- 
TOV, ovpavov, oi 5 <j>w, ol 5' aldtpa /caXou- 
ffiv, ol 5' avrb TOVTO, TT^/XTTTTJJ' ovffiav, rj rb 

/card <pv<rii> iarlv, OVK e avdynris ov5' d\- 
Xws (ru/a/Se^TjKos. The latter part of this 
extract does not accurately represent 
Plato's opinion, since the dodecahedron 
was not a constituent of any substance 
existing in nature, but simply the model 
for the distribution of the zodiac into 
twelve signs. 

5. TavTQ <TT<S] This is evidently the 
true reading. If the inquirer were to 
stop short at the number five and declare 
that so many K&T/AOI existed, he would be 
more reasonable, says Plato, than he who 
should go on to a larger or indefinite 
number. Stallbaum's iraj, which has but 
slight support, is quite inappropriate : 
Plato could not say that it was reasonable 
for every one to doubt whether there are 
five KOff/j-oi or one; it would not be 
reasonable in his own case, as we see in 
31 B. 

6. i'va avrov Kara riv eUora Xo^yov] 

It will be noted that here, where he is 
dealing with physics and the region of 
opinion, Plato only pronounces the unity 
of the universe to be probable and con- 
sonant to his theory of nature. But at 
31 B it is authoritatively declared to be 
one on the infallible principle of meta- 
physical necessity. After /jLtjv^ei, 0eoj 
cannot possibly be genuine. 

7. aXXos Si els aXXa irg] Obviously 
aimed at Demokritos : a philosopher who 
has no place for poDs in his system may 
very well maintain an infinity of KOffpot. 

8. TOWTOV] i. e. Demokritos, who is 
dismissed with something more like con- 
tempt than Plato is wont to show for 
other thinkers. 

T<1 84 y e Y v Ta vvv r *P Xoyw] Com- 
pare 17 A dvffpuirovs T<p \6yi{> yeyovoras. 

ii. irXaoriKftmiTT]] The other three 
are too subtle to be plastic. Aristotle's 
objections to the present theory will be 
found in de caelo in viii 3o6 b 3: they 
are not for the most part very forcible. 
The most pertinent is that of Plato's geo- 
metrical figures only the pyramid and the 
cube can fill up space continuously : the 

200 nAATONOS [55 E 

tuy, TT;? TWV dvio-wv, TO re ef etcarepov gvvreOev eiriTreBov 
laoTr\evpov rerpdycovov rpiycavov /card re fJ*epr) KCU 
Ka0* o\ov o-Tao-ifjiWTepws e dvcuyicrjs fteftrjice. Sib 777 fiev TOVTO 
aTTOi/e/AOZ/Te? Tov el/Cora \6yov Biatrm^o/jiev, vSaTi 8' av r<av \onrwv 56 A 
5 TO Bva-KivrjTOTaTOV eZSo?, TO 8' evKivijTorarov irvpL, TO Se fj,eaov 
depi' real TO /iey oyutf/ooVaTOz/ o"c5/ta irvpL, TO ' ai5 f^eyto-Tov vBaTi, 
TO Be jj,e<rov depi' Kal TO /x.ei/ ogvTarov av irvpL, TO Se Sevrepov 
depi, TO Be TpiTov vBaTi. Tavr ovv Br} jrdvTa, TO (J,ev %ov o\i- 
<yi<TTa<> fidcreis evKivrjTOTCiTOV dvdytcr) Tretyvicevai, Tfj,r)TiKa>TaTov Te 
10 KOI oi>TaTov ov irawrr) irdvTwv, TI Te e\a<j)poTaTOv, ej; 6\iyio'T(ov B 

os TWV OVTWV [iep(ov TO Be SevTepov BevTepcos Ta avTa 
Lv, T/3tT&)9 Be TO TpiTov. (TT(0 Brj KaTa TOV opOov \6yov 
TOV eiKOTa TO fiev Trjs vrvpa/jilBos o~Tepebv 76701/05 
(TTOi'^elov Kal cnrepfj,a' TO Be BevTepov KaTa yevecriv 
15 [lev depof, TO Be TpiTov vSaTO?. iravia ovv Brj TavTa Bei Bia- 
voeia'dai cr/AiKpa OVTWS, w? Ka& ev CKaaTov ftev TOV yevov? eKacrTOV 
Bid o-fjUKpoTijTa ovBev opcapevov v<j> rjfi&v, gvvaOpoio-OevTwv Be C 
TToXkdov TOI)? OJKOVS avT&v 6pdo~0ai' Kal Br) Kal TO T<OV dva\o- 
<yiwv wept T TO. TrXijOrf KOI Ta5 tcivrfo-eis Kal Ta? d\\a<f 
10 TravTaxf) TOV 0e6v, oirrjirep tf T^? dvdjKr)? eKovva treio'Oeio'd 

8 dXiylo-ras : 6\lyas r&s A. dXiyoffr&s S. 10 Kal ante tj-fcarov omittit S. 
14 etirufiev : etwofjiev A. 

bearing of this will be discussed a little the right meaning; the sense requires 

later; see note on 58 A. 'very few': for the mobile and penetrat- 

i. T jUprj Kal Ka6' 8Xov] i.e. as ing nature of fire is due to the small num- 

the rectangular isosceles is more stable, ber of its sides and the consequent acute- 

owing to the equality of its sides, than ness of its angles. Plato evidently con- 

the rectangular scalene, so the solid based siders that the sharp points of the pyramid 

on the former is more steady than that most readily cleave their way through 

based on the latter. other bodies ; and so Aristotle understood 

6. TO (ilv o-pKpoTarov] No com- him to mean, de caelo in viii 307* 2. 

parison in point of size is made with the It is curious to observe how the meaning 

corpuscules of earth, because the latter of TroXAoords and of dXiywrrbs sometimes 

has a different base : but in the case of seems to be inverted : compare the passage 

the other three the size of the figure of the Antigone aforesaid, irpaa-crei S' 6\i- 

varies according to the number of the yoffrov xpbvov ZKTOS aras (v. 1. 6\lyiffTov) 

radical triangles contained in it. with Demosthenes /caret 11/j.oKpdrovs 196 

8. oXi/ytoras pd<ms] Stallbaum seems TO TO. TO&TUV ITO\\O<TT$ xpovy /M\IS Kal 

perverse in reading dXiyocrrds. For even a.KovTa.s...Ka.TO.T<.dtva.<.. In the first case 

if (5Xi7<>(rraj could mean 'very small' the meaning will be 'he is free from woe 

(which is quite dubious: see Campbell for a time which is one of a few (sc. of a 

on Sophokles Antigone 625), this is not few times when he is free)'; i.e. he is 

56 c] TIMAIOS. 201 

with unequal ; and of the surfaces composed of the two triangles 
the equilateral quadrangle necessarily is more stable than the 
equilateral triangle, both in its parts and as a whole. There- 
fore in assigning this to earth we preserve the probability of our 
account ; and also in giving to water the least mobile and to fire 
the most mobile of those which remain ; while to air we give 
that which is intermediate. Again we shall assign the smallest 
figure to fire, and the largest to water and the intermediate to 
air: and the keenest to fire, the next to air, and the third to 
water. Now among all these that which has the fewest bases 
must naturally in all respects be the most cutting and keen of 
all, and also the most nimble, seeing it is composed of the small- 
est number of similar parts; and the second must have these 
same qualities in the second degree, and the third in the third 
degree. Let it be determined then, according to the right ac- 
count and the probable, that the solid body which has taken 
the form of the pyramid is the element and seed of fire ; and 
the second in order of generation let us say to be that of air, and 
the third that of water. Now all these bodies we must conceive 
as being so small that each single body in the several kinds 
cannot for its smallness be seen by us at all ; but when many 
are heaped together, their united mass is seen : and we must 
suppose that the due proportion in respect of their multitude 
and motions and all their other powers, when God had com- 
pleted them with all perfection, in so far as the nature of neces- 

seldom free; the second 'they paid at a agreement with Uemokritos, in making 

moment which is one of many moments his atoms so small as to be individually 

(sc. in which they had not paid)', i.e. invisible, and only perceptible in masses, 

after a long interval. But neither of 18. TO TWV dvoXo-yuov] That is to say, 

these constructions countenances 6\iyo- observing the proportional relations pro- 

<TTcts here. In assigning the pyramidal pounded in 32 A, B. 

form to fire Plato differs from Demokritos, 20. imo-Oeicra] cf. 48 A. i-vi>yp/j.6cr0a.i 

who attributed the mobility of fire to the is sometimes regarded as an anacoluthon ; 

roundness of its atoms : cf. Aristotle de but there can be hardly a doubt that it is 

caelo 307* 1 6. a middle. The middle of this word is 

10. ^Xa<j>poTaTov] Not light, but used twice elsewhere by Plato, each time 

nimble, mobile. in the aorist : see above 53 E crufMTWf 

13. ortpcov yeyovos] For the bearing rfrrapa yfri) ffwapfjiocraffffai, and Politicus 

of this see note on 56 D. /card y&effiv, 309 c 6ei<f i-vvap/j-offa/dvij 8e<r/jup. . 

i.e. in order of generation, having the 560 57 D, c. xxii. When earth then 

next fewest sides. is resolved by fire, it drifts about until it 

1 6. <r|UKpd OVTWS] Here Plato is in can reunite with earthy elements, and so 



[56 c- 

<j>v(Ti<; VTrei/cev, ravrrj Trdvry Si d/cpifieia? d-jrore\eo'6ei,o'wv VTT 
avrov, vvr)piji,6a-0ai ravr* dvd \6yov. 

XXII. 'EiK Srj Trdvrtov wv Trepl rd yevr) TrpoeipiJKa/juev cSS' dv 
/card TO el/cos /taXtaV av e^oi. yfj pev ^vvrvy\dvovaa Trvpl o~ia- D 
5 \v0etcrd re vrro rrjs of;vTr)TO<; avrov <pepoir' dv, etV ev avr<a Trvpl 
\v0eicra eir ev depo? err' ev vSaro? oy/C(p rv^oi, /j,e%piTrep dv avrfjs 
fry gvvrvxovra rd pepr), Trd\iv ^vvap/jLoaBevra avrd ai5rot5, 777 
<yevoiro' ov <ydp et? d\\o ye etSo? e\0oi TTOT' dv. vScop Be VTTO 
Tru/305 fjipio-0ev, elre ical VTT depots, ey^copel yiyvecrBai gvcrravra 

i vweiicev : vireiKe HSZ. 4 a.v post /J.&\I<TT omittit S. 

6 fj.txpnrep : 5 ^expnrep A. 

resume the form of earth ; for, owing to 
the dissimilarity of base, it cannot be 
changed to any of the other three. But 
when water is resolved by fire or air, it 
can be reformed in the shape of fire and 
air. So when air is resolved, one of its 
particles make two of fire, or two particles 
and a half form one of water. Of fire 
also two particles mtiy coalesce into one 
of air. And, in general, when a smaller 
mass of any of the three is overcome by a 
larger mass of any other and resolved, its 
resolution ceases the moment it assumes 
the form of the victorious element, but 
not until then. So the vanquished ele- 
ment must either escape away and seek 
its own region in space, or else accept 
the form of the other. It follows then 
that, owing to this incessant conflict be- 
tween the elements, perpetual changes of 
form are taking place, and perpetual 
changes of position in space. 

All this has been said in view of the 
primary and typical kinds in the four 
forms, fire, air, water, earth : but a variety 
of kinds are found within the limits of 
each form. These are due to a variation 
of size in the primal triangles, of which 
there are so many sizes as there are kinds 
in each form. Such kinds by manifold 
intermixture produce an endless number 
of varieties in phenomena, which it is our 
business to investigate. 

5. 4>e'poiT' &v] Earth has not the 

alternative, which is open to the other 
three, of coalescing with the dominant 
element : it must therefore drift about in 
a chaotic condition, until it can escape 
into its own place and so regain its proper 

6. tHr' Iv dUpos] The form of this 
sentence suggests that the dissolution 
takes place by the agency of fire within 
a mass of air or of water. But clearly 
the same result follows whether the agent 
be fire air or water. 

9. |wrrdvTo] Ast and Stallbaum would 
read v<TTdi>. But ^vffrdvra agrees, by an 
easy attraction, with v /jv dvo d follow- 
ing. It might be considered however 
that, since the single particle of water is 
resolved into two of air and one of fire, 
would be more correct than 
Plato's word however is per- 
fectly accurate, if his theory be rightly 
understood. And this leads to a discussion 
of the chief peculiarity and difficulty of 
that theory. 

First then Aristotle <& caelo in i 299 i 
brings against it the fundamental ob- 
jection that it is impossible to form solid 
matter out of mathematical planes. Now 
it is entirely preposterous to suppose that 
the most accomplished mathematician of 
his time was not fully alive to a truth 
which, as Aristotle himself admits, &rt- 
TroXrjs toriv idflv. The theory of an over- 
sight in this respect must therefore be 



sity, consenting and yielding to persuasion, suffered, were every- 
where by him ordained in fitting measure. 

XXII. From all that we have already said in the matter of 
these four kinds, the facts would seem to be as follows. When 
earth meets with fire and is dissolved by the keenness of it, it 
would drift about, whether it were dissolved in fire itself, or in 
some mass of air or water, until the parts of it meeting and again 
being united became earth once more ; for it never could pass 
into any other kind. But when water is divided by fire or by 
air, it may be formed again and become one particle of fire and 

dismissed out of hand. Howbeit, if we minates void as far as possible from his 
regard these geometrical figures as solid 
bodies which interchange their forms, 
they will not produce the combinations 
required. For instance, the apposition 
of two pyramids will not produce an 
octahedron, as it ought according to 
Plato, but an irregular six-sided figure : 
and by dividing the octahedron we obtain 
not a regular tetrahedron, but a five-sided 
figure having four equilateral triangles 
meeting in the apex, and a square for 
the base. Similarly the icosahedron re- 
fuses to play its prescribed part. Again 
it is incredible that Plato was unaware or 
oblivious of these elementary facts. 

Martin has a theory so neat and in- 
genious that, although I do not see my 
way to accepting it, yet it ought not to 
be left unnoticed. His view is that 
Plato's tiriireda. are not mathematical 
planes at all, but thin laminae of matter, 
' feuilles minces taillees suivant les figures 
rectilignes qu'il a decrites.' Thus our 
four geometrical figures are not solid 
bodies, but merely envelopes or shells, 
void within. In this way no doubt 
Plato's transformations would be perfectly 
practicable. Supposing that an octa- 
hedron were shattered icard. T&. rptyuva, 
then its eight triangular sides would be 

recomposed in the form of two pyramids ; 
and all the other transmutations would 
be equally feasible. This explanation, 
despite its ingenuity, is nevertheless not 
to my mind satisfactory. For Plato eli- 

material system ; and though we shall 
presently see that it cannot be entirely 
banished, it is reduced to an absolute 
minimum. It is hardly credible then 
that he should have admitted an ad- 
mixture of void into the very foundation 
of his structure of matter. Again, if he 
had intended to propound so very novel 
and extraordinary a theory as the con- 
struction of matter out of hollow particles, 
surely he must have stated it with a little 
more definiteness. Moreover on this 
hypothesis Plato sadly misuses technical 
terms : he denominates planes what are 
really solid bodies, though very thin ; 
and he terms solid what is really but a 
hollow shell : for the phrase in 56 B 
is quite definite as to this point, TO 
ftv TTJS Trvpafjddos crrepeov yeyovos tldos, 
Finally how could hollow particles es- 
cape being crushed by the tremendous 
constricting force described in 58 A? In 
the face of all these objections, the force 
of which is in part admitted by Martin 
himself, it seems difficult to accept this 

The following is the solution which I 
should propound as less open to ex- 
ception. We must bear in mind that 
matter in its ultimate analysis is just 
space. We must not look upon the 
geometrical solids as so much stuff which 
is put up into parcels, now of one shape, 
now of another ; but as the expression of 
the geometrical law which rules the con- 



[ 5 6 D- 

eV fAev Trypo? (Tafia, Bvo Be ae'/)O5* ra Be depos r^^iara eg 61/05 
pepovs 8ia\v0evTo<; oV av yevola-Orjv a-cofiara irvpos. /cat TraXtz/, E 
'6rav depi irvp vBaa-iv re 17 Ttvt 717 ^epiXa/jL^avofievov ev TroXXot? 
6\i<yov, KIVOV pevov ev fapofjievois, f^a^ofievov KOI vitcvjOev /cara- 
5 OpavffOy, Bvo 7TU/305 <7a>/J,ara et? ep %vvi<TTa<T0ov 6*805 depos' Kal 
os depof Kep/J,aTia'0VTO<> re etc Svolv o\oiv teal 77/410-605 
eZ8o5 ev o\ov ea-rat gv/jLirayes. (uSe yap ST) \oyio-atfJie0a 
avTa 7rd\iv, (5 '6rav ev irvpl \ap,f3av6p,evov rwv d\\a>v inr* avrov 57 A 
TI 761/0? rfj rwv ywiwv Kal Kara ra? TrXeu/^a? o^vr^n refjivrjrat, 
10 gva-rdv p>ev et? TTJV etcelvov (pvffiv TreTravrai re/Avo/jievov TO yap 
Kal ravrov avrw 761/05 eKaarov ovre rtvd fjLeraftoXrjv efj,- 
Bvvarov ovre TI Tradetv VTTO TOV Kara raura o/u.oia>5 re 
e&)5 8' av et5 aXXo rt yiyvo/Aevov $TTOV ov KpeiTTOVi 
i, \v6/jievov ov TraveTai. TO. re av (rfjiiKpOTepa OTav ev 


stitution of matter: they are definite 
forms under which space by the law of 
nature appears in various circumstances. 
The planes are real planes ; but they do 
not compose the solid; they merely ex- 
press the law of its formation. Given 
certain conditions, the geometrical law 
obtains that matter shall receive form as 
pyramids : alter the conditions, e.g. in- 
crease the pressure, and the pyramids 
disappear, their place being taken by 
octahedrons ; and so forth. It is not 
then that two of the former particles 
have combined to make one of the latter, 
but that the matter in its new condition 
assumes a shape in which the radical 
form, the rectangular scalene, appears 
twice as many times as in the former. 
Increase the pressure again, and the 
triangle will appear five times as often as 
in the first. And if the triangles are 
equal, the second and third contain twice 
and five times as much stuff as the first. 
In short, when matter which has been 
existing in the pyramidal form is prevented 
from doing so any longer, it must not 
assume any random figure, but one which 
is constructed on either twice or five 
times as many primal triangles as the 

6 Svoiv'. Sveiv S. 

pyramid. The tirtireda then are, I be- 
lieve, neither to be regarded with Aristotle 
as planes out of which we are expected 
to construct solids, nor with Martin as 
thin solids ; but as the law of the structure 
of matter. Thus, instead of having two 
or more corpuscules combined into one, or 
one resolved into several, we have the 
whole mass fused, as it were, and re- 
moulded. This interchange however can 
only take place where the law of form- 
ation is one and the same. Earth, obey- 
ing a different formative law, cannot go 
beyond one sole form. For matter which 
has once been impressed with either of 
the primal figures can never pass into 
the other figure : in the rudimentary 
condition to which it is reduced by the 
fracture of its particles, the force which 
forms it as a pyramid or a cube is in 
abeyance, but not the law which im- 
pressed it with the rectangular scalene or 
the rectangular isosceles. 

On this showing then the correctness 
of |v<7TdiTa is clear : though I admit it is 
equally justified by Martin's hypothesis, 
could the objections which I have urged 
against the latter be overcome. 

i. ?v jJiiv irvpos] The sides of the 

57 A] 



two of air : and the divisions of air may become for every particle 
broken up two particles of fire. And again when fire is caught 
in air or in waters or in earth, a little in a great bulk, moving 
amid a rushing body, and contending with it is vanquished and 
broken up, two particles of fire combine into one figure of 
air: and when air is vanquished and broken small, from two 
whole and one half particle one whole figure of water will be 
composed. Let us also reckon it once again thus : when any 
of the other kinds is intercepted in fire and is divided by it 
through the sharpness of its angles and its sides, if it forms into 
the shape of fire, it at once ceases from being divided : for a 
kind which is uniform and identical, of whatever sort it be, can 
neither be the cause of any change nor can it suffer any from 
that which is identical and uniform with itself; but so long as 
passing into another kind a lesser bulk contends with the 
greater, it ceases never from being broken. And when the 

icosahedron, being 20 in number, are 
equal to the sum of the sides of two 
octahedrons and one pyramid. 

2. Kal irdXiv] Having given instances 
of smaller corpuscules arising from the 
resolution of larger, Plato now passes to 
the formation of larger particles from 
the resolution of smaller. 

4. KaTaOpaverOfl] This is the converse 
of wTaira above: the pyramids, being 
the smallest particle, could not literally be 
' broken up ' into the larger bodies. The 
same applies to /cara/cep/uaTto-^i'Toj cifyos 

7. <38e -yap Si) XoyurwixcOa] Having 
set forth the rules governing the transition 
of one kind of particle into another, 
Plato proceeds to point out that, when 
one element is overpowered by another, 
the only mode in which it can recover 
any form, in default of escape to its own 
region, is to assimilate itself to the 
victorious body. 

9. Kara rds Tr\vpds] i.e. cleft by the 
sharp edges of the sides. 

10. T& -y^P ofioiov] This view was 
universally held, with the sole exception 
of Demokritos: cf. Aristotle de gen. et 

corr. I vii 323 b 3 ol /JLV yap TrXetcrrot TOVTO 
ye o/iOPOT/TtKcDs \4yovffiv, ws TO fjv 8/j.oiov 
VTTO TOV 6/j.olov irdv diraffts <TTI did TO fj.ij- 
Siv /j.a\\oi> TroirfTiKov rj iraOriTiKov elvat 
Odrepov dartpov (irdvTa yap o/xoi'ws virdp- 
Xetv TO.VTO. rots o/uofois), rd 5' dv6fj.oia Kal 
TO. diarpopa iroielv Kal iratT-)(e<-v et's oXXi;Xo 
irl<t>VKev . ...Afj/uo/cpiTos 5 irapa TOI/S aX- 
Xouj tdtws Xee /JLOVOS' <f>ij<rl yap TO avrb 
Kal ofiotov elvai TO Te TTOLOVV Kal TO irdcrxov 
ov yap tyxupeiv TCL frepa Kal di.a<f)4povTa 
irdffxei" vir' d\\ri\uv, dXXa KOI> %Tepa 6vra 
Trotj TI fls aXXijXa, OVK rj Zrepa, dXX' rj TO.V- 

T0l> Tl {iTTCtpXei, TWUTr) TOVTO 

awToij. Theophrastos however considers 
that the view of Demokritos is uncertain : 
see de sensu 49. This doctrine of fj.t)8tv 
iradflv TO Sfj.oi.ov viro TOV bftolov only refers 
to physical change, and does not affect 
the principle 'like is known by like'. 

14. ra. T at! o-iuxpoTcpa] There seems 
at first sight a good deal of iteration in 
this chapter; but there is no real tau- 
tology. Plato (i) explains how (a) the 
larger figures are dissolved by the smaller, 
(/3) how the smaller are dissolved by the 
larger; (2) he declares that (a) a small 
mass of the larger figures, intercepted by 




rots fjii%o(ri TToXXoi? i jrepi\afiftavo^eva o\iya BiaOpavojAeva tea- B 
raa-^evvvijrai, ^vvia-racrOai pev e0e\.ovra ei<? rrjv rov Kparovvros 
IBeav vreTravrai tcaracrfievvvfjieva yiyverai re IK jrvpos dijp, e 
ae/90? iiScop' edv 8' eh avrd ip fcal TOOV d\\o)v ri vviov yevwv 
5 pdxyrai, \v6fj,eva ov iraverai, Trplv r) TravraTraaiv (aOovfj^eva KOI 
BiaXvdevra etc(f)vyp 777)0? TO f;vyyeve<;, rj vi/ctjOevra, ev etc 7roXXft>z> 
ofAoiov TO) Kparijcravri yevopevov, avrov %VVOIKOV fjuelvr). Kai Brj 
KOI Kara ravra ra TraOij/j^ara Sia^el/Serai ra? ^co/oa? airavra' C 
Siea-Trj/ce p,ev <ydp rov yevov? e/cacrrov ra ir\r)6tj Kara TOTTOV iBtov 

10 8ia rrjv T?;<? Se^opevrjf tcivr)(riv, ra Be dvop,oiovfieva e/cdcrrore eav- 
rois, aXXot? Se op,oiovp,va, (freperat Bid rov aeia-fiov Trpo? rov eicel- 
vcov ol<? av ofioitoOf) ro7rov. 

"Qaa pev ovv dicpara tcai Trp&ra aw^ara, Bid roiovrwv airiwv 
yeyove" rov B 1 ev rot? eiBecriv avrcov erepa ep/jre^)VKevai yevt] rrjv 

15 etcarepov rwv aroi^eimv airiareov <rvcrra(riv, fjirj JAOVOV ev e/carepav 
(jieyeOos e%ov TO rpiywvov <f)vrevaai icar ap^a?, a\X' eXarTw T D 
teal pellet), rov dpi0fj,ov Be e^ovra rocrovrov, ocraTrep av p rdv Tot9 
eiBeo-i yevr). Bio Brj o-vpfjuyvvfjieva avrd re 7rp09 avrd KOI 


rd A. iv : v A. 

a large mass of the smaller, (/3) a small 
mass of the smaller, intercepted by a 
large mass of the larger, can recover a 
definite form by becoming assimilated to 
the victorious element. 

4. !dv 8' ls avrd, tg] The case put 
here seems to differ from the foregoing in 
this. Hitherto we have supposed a small 
mass of one kind intercepted by a large 
mass of the other : now we take the case 
of a prolonged struggle between pretty 
equal forces, when the process of dissolu- 
tion continues without intermission, until 
one side is vanquished and either escapes 
away or is assimilated. 

6. 8v K iroXXwv] This ensues of 
course only if the victorious side is the 
kind formed of the larger figures. 

8. SiafJicCperai rds \c6pas] Any kind 
by changing its figure changes the region 
of its affinity, as will be explained in the 
following chapter. 

9. rd irXijOrj] i.e. the main bulk of the 
substance. Detached portions of every 

kind may from various causes be found 
scattered everywhere through space, but 
the great mass of each is in its own 
region : cf. 63 B oO /cai TrXetoroc av 
i)0poiff[j.vov ett) irpos o <f>{perai. 

10. rr\v -rfjs 8xK^VT]s K^VTJO-IV] The 
vibration of the virodoxi) described at 
52 E. 

13. ocra [j.ev ovv aKpara KO.L irptora 
owpaTa] i.e. the primary and typical 
forms of the four so-called elements. 
Hitherto we have been dealing merely 
with the broad distinctions between fire, 
air, water, and earth. We shall here- 
after find it necessary to treat of a number 
of different varieties. These diversities 
are accounted for by a diversity in the 
magnitude of the primary triangles. 

1 7. oo-airep av fj reiv TOIS ttSeo-i y^ 1 ]] 
The elSos of course signifies some one of 
the four, as distinguished from the other 
three; say fire. There are a certain 
number of sizes in the radical triangles, 
and consequently an equal number of 

D] TIMAIO2. 207 

smaller figures few in number are caught in a multitude of 
larger figures and are being broken in pieces and quenched, if 
they consent to combine into the form of the stronger they 
then and there cease from being quenched ; and from fire arises 
air, from air water. But if they assail the others, and another 
sort meet and contend with them, they cease not from being 
shattered until, being entirely repelled and dissolved, they find 
refuge with some of their own kind, or being overcome, form 
from many of their own figures one similar to the victorious 
element, and there remain and abide with it. Moreover on 
account of these conditions they all are changing their places ; 
for the bulk of every kind are sorted into separate regions of 
their own through the motion of the recipient : and those which 
are altered from their own nature and made like some other 
are carried by reason of this movement to the region proper to 
the element to which they are assimilated. 

All unmixed and primary bodies have thus come into being 
through the causes we have described : but for the fact that 
within the several classes different kinds exist we must assign as 
its cause the structure of the elementary triangles ; it does not 
originally produce in each kind of triangle one and the same 
size only, but some greater and some less ; and there are just so 
many sizes as there are kinds in the classes : and when these 

sizes in the pyramid. Now every sub- smaller than the smallest octahedron, and 

stance which is composed entirely from the largest octahedron than the smallest 

pyramids of some one size constitutes a icosahedron for instance we find in 66 D 

y^i/os of fire; there are therefore just so that the 0X^3es of the nostrils are too 

many -ytvri of fire as there are sizes of wide for the densest form of air and too 

pyramids. But there are also substances narrow for the subtlest form of water, 

which are composed of pyramids of dif- 57 D 58 c, c. xxiii. Our discourse 

ferent sizes: such substances will not be now requires that we should set forth the 

typical of any 7^05, but will approximate causes of rest and motion. Motion im- 

to some 7^cos according as any special plies the mover and the moved, without 

size of pyramid preponderates in its fabric. which two it cannot be. These two must 

Accordingly we have in nature an in- be dissimilar; therefore dissimilarity is 

definite number of substances belonging an essential condition of motion. And 

to each eI5oj, graduating from one ytvos the cause of dissimilarity is inequality, 

to another. The investigation of these Now the reason why all things are not 

begins in chapter xxiv. It is obvious sifted once for all into their proper regions 

that the variation in the size of the and so become at rest is as follows. The 

triangles must be confined within definite whole globe of the universe is subject to 

limits, for the largest pyramid is always a mighty constricting centripetal force, 



[57 D 

aXXT/Xa rr)v TrotKiXiav ecrrlv aireipa' 775 8rj 8ei Oecopovf yuyvecrOai 
Tov<f /ieXXoi/ra<? Trepl <f)v<retos el/con \6ya) ^rjaecrdai. 

XXIII. Ktz/77(reft><> ovv <TTatre<w? re trepi, rLva rpoTrov KOI peO' 
&VTLVWV yiyvevdov, el firj rt? 8t,ofio\o<yij(reTai, TroXX' av eii) e/i7ro- 
5 8<av T&> KdTOTTia-dev \oyio-fj,<. ra fj,ev ovv rj8ij Trepl avr<av eipyrai, E 
7T/005 8' eiceivoif ert raSe, ev fiev 6fia\OTV)Ti pijBeTroTe e0e\eiv KI- 
vrjcnv evelvai. TO yap Kivrjcrofievov avev rov Kivr)<rovTOS rj TO 
Kivrjcrov avev TOV Kivr)<rofjLvov ^aXeTroy, jj,a\\ov 8e dSvvaTOV elvaf 
Kivtjais Se OVK ecrrt TOVTWV anrfamnr ravra 8e 6/iaXa elval TTOTC 

10 dovvaTov. OVTCO 8rj a-Taaiv fjusv ev o/LtaXor^Tt, Kiwrjo'iv 8e elf avw- 
fia\OTtjTa del TiQwfiev atria 8e aVtcror^? av Trjs dvw^aXov <f>v- 58 A 
crews. dvicroTrjTOS 8e yevecriv fj,ev 8ie\t)\v6a/j,v 7T(W9 &e Trore ov 
Kara ryevr) Bta^copicrOevTa eKacrra TreTraurat r^? 8i d\\r/\(i)v 
tcivrfffecos ical <popa<;, OVK e'iirofiev. w8e ovv 7rd\n> epovpev. r\ 

15 TOV TravTos TreptoSo?, eVeiS?) crvpTrepieXafte TO. yevij, fcvic\oTepr)S 
ovcra fcal Trpos avTrjv 7re<f)VKvla ftov\ecr6ai ^vvievai, crtyiryyei Trdvra 

n it ante avi<r6ri)s dederunt SZ. 

which crushes its whole mass together 
and will not suffer any vacant space with- 
in it. This forces the subtler elements 
into the interstices of the coarser ; and so 
by the admixture of larger and smaller 
forms, dilation and compression is every- 
where at work; thereupon ensues the 
transmutation of one element into an- 
other, and by consequence a change of its 
proper region to which it tends. Thus a 
perpetual shifting of forms ensures a per- 
petual shifting of place. 

3. KivT]orws otfv] Concerning motion 
Plato sets forth in this chapter (i) whence 
it originates, (2) why it never ceases. 

6. Iv fiiv 6|iaX6rT]Ti,] We saw above 
at 57 A that like could not affect like 
nor be affected by it: it follows then 
that in a perfectly uniform mass motion 
cannot arise, since motion is the effect of 
a moving cause upon the object moved. 
The KIVOVV then and Kivotiiuvov must be 
dvtbfj.a\a, heterogeneous. 

7. TO -yap KivTj<ro(Mvov] cf. Aristotle 
physica III i 2oo b 31 rb y&p KivrjTiKbv 

TOV Kivqrov Kal TO Kunjrov KWIJTQV 

vwo TOV KivijTiKov : and below 2O2 a 1 3 
fffTiv 17 Ktvrjcris iv ry KU>r)T$' tvTe\x*i& 

g. TdWTd] SC. TO KlVTjffOV Kdi TO KLV1)- 


10. ^v 6|iaXoTi] dv|iaX6Tt]Ta] 

Rest exists in uniformity, motion is attri- 
buted to dissimilarity : thus we may ex- 
press the change of preposition. 

12. <xvi<r6TT)Tos 8i yivtirw] How 
inequality originates we have seen in the 
account of the structure of matter. It 
arises (i) from the dissimilarity of the 
two primal triangles, (2) from the diffe- 
rent geometrical figures which are based 
upon one of the triangles, (3) from in- 
equality in size of the triangles them- 

irs 8^ ITOT ov Kara Y&tj] This sen- 
tence is misunderstood by Lindau and 
Stallbaum. Plato means to explain how 
it is that the four etdi) have not settled 
each in its proper sphere, and thus avoided 
interfering with each other and so pro- 
ducing irregularity and consequently 
motion. For the vibration of the wo- 

58 A] TIMAIOS. 209 

are mixed up with themselves or with one another, an endless 
diversity arises, which must be examined by those who would 
put forward a probable theory concerning nature. 

XXIII. Now concerning rest and motion, how they arise 
and under what conditions, we must come to an agreement, else 
many difficulties will stand in the way of our argument that is 
to follow. This has been already in part set forth, but we have 
yet to add that in uniformity no movement will ever exist. For 
that what is to be moved should exist without that which is to 
move it, or what is to move without that which is to be moved, 
is difficult or rather impossible : but without these there can be 
no motion, and for these to be uniform is not possible. So 
then let us always assign rest to uniformity and motion to its 
opposite. Now the opposite of uniformity is caused by in- 
equality ; and of inequality we have discussed the origin. But 
how it comes to pass that all bodies are not sorted off into 
their several kinds and cease from passing through one another 
and changing their place, this we have not explained. Let us 
put it again in this way. The revolution of the whole, when it 
had embraced the four kinds, being circular, with a natural 
tendency to return upon itself, compresses everything and suffers 

tends to keep them all assorted and he makes of it. 
apart from each other; and this would <r<f>yyt travra] Compare Empe- 

actually be the condition of things, dokles 185 (Karsten) IIT&V yS' aWrip 

were it not for the iri\r](Tis presently crQtyyuv irepl xtixXov airavra. This vast 

to be mentioned. Stallbaum supposes circular constriction squeezes all matter 

that the elements are (carot -ytvr) Siaxw- together with so overpowering force, that 

piffOivra. : but Plato's reasoning turns no vacancy is allowed to remain any- 

precisely on the point that they are not : where ; but wherever there is room for a 

never completely, that is; for the bulk smaller particle to penetrate the inter- 

of each is to be found in its own home. stices between the larger, it is at once 

16. irpds avn^v ir<|>vKvia] The notion forced in. So that not only are hete- 

is that the whole universe globes itself rogeneous elements forced into combi- 

about its centre with a mighty inward nation, but the subtler and acuter figures 

pressure, elXeircu irepl TOV did, iravTfa divide the larger KO.T& rk rplyuva and ir6\ov, so that everything within so change their structure : while they 

it is packed as tightly as possible. The in turn are themselves compressed by 

force may be compared to that exerted the larger until they assume the form 

in winding a hank of string into a round of the latter. Consequently we have 

ball. This is the second of Plato's two side by side perpetually the 63os *rdrw, 

great dynamic powers: we shall after- fire through air to water, and the oSot 

wards see what varied and extensive use avu, water through air to fire. 

P. T. 14 


[ 5 8 A- 

teal tcevrjv ^copav ovBepiav ea XetVecr^afc. Bio Brj irvp fiev ei9 
cnravra Bie\^\vde fjuaXiara, drjp Be BevTepov, to? XCTTTOTIJTI BevTepov B 
6<f>v, Kal Ta\\a Tavry ra yap etc fieyia-TWv pepwv yeyovoTa fj,e- 
yiO'T'tjv KevoTtfTa ev TTJ ^vcrrdaei. Trapa\e\onre, ret, Be crjjiiKporara 

5 e\a^L(TTi]v. 77 Brj rr)<i 7rt\r;creft)9 %vvoSo$ TO. (TfjUKpd els ra TWV 
fMyd\o)v BiaKeva vv(o0ei. ar^LKpwv ovv irapd fj,eyd\a TiOe/j,evo)v 
Kal TWV eXarrovcov TO, fiei^ova Biatcpivovrwv, rwv Be pei^ovcov eiceiva 
(TvyicpivovTcov, Trdvr avco Karw jjbera^eperai irpo<t TOI)? eavrwv 
TOTTOVf fiTa/3d\\ov yap TO peyeOos etcacrrov Kal rrjv TOTTWV pera- C 

10 /3d\\i a-rdo'iv. ovTQ) Br/ Bid ravrd re 77 rr)<i dvwfiaKorrjro^ Bia- 
yeveo-is del ryv del /civrjcriv TOVTWV ovcrav ea-ofiev^v re 

XXIV. Mera Brj ravra Bel voelv, 'on irvp6<j re yevt) 
yeyovev, olov <j>\o TO re diro Trj<f <pi\oy6$ dvriov, o /caiei ftev ov, 
15 $&>5 Be rot? ofifAacn Trape^ei, TO re (f>\oy6<; diroa^ea-Oe 10-779 ev rot9 
8ia7Tvpoi<s KaTdheiTrofievov avTOV. icaTa rai5ra Be aepos TO /u-ey D 



14 a.Tri6v: airrbv A. 

3. yxyt<rrt\v Kv6T>]Ta] This expres- 
sion shows plainly enough that Plato 
was well aware of the fact which Aris- 
totle urges as a flaw in his theory, namely 
that it is impossible for all his figures 
to fill up space with entire continuity. 
In the structure of air and of water there 
must be minute interstices of void ; there 
must also be a certain amount of void 
for the reason that, the universe being 
a sphere, it is impossible for rectilinear 
figures exactly to fill it up. But, it is 
to be observed, Plato's theory does not 
demand that void shall be absolutely 
excluded from his system, but only that 
there shall be no vacant space large 
enough to contain the smallest existing 
corpuscule of matter. The larger cor- 
puscules have larger interstices between 
them than the smaller. So long however 
as these interstices are not large enough 
to afford entrance to the smallest particle 
of any element, the effect is the same 
as of a solid mass without any cavities ; 
but when once they are large enough 
to contain any particle, jrfX^iriy instantly 

g /j.Taf)<i\\ov : fnfTa[ia\bi> A pr. m. 
xctet ASZ. 

forces one into the vacancy. This is 
all Plato means by Kevrjv x^pav ovSeplav 
tq. \elireaOai : he denies void as a mechani- 
cal principle, but not its existence al- 
together in the nature of things. 

Besides the atomists, the existence of 
void was affirmed by the Pythagoreans ; 
see above, 33 C, and Aristotle physica 
iv vi 2i3 b 11: it was denied by the 
Eleatics, by Empedokles, by Anaxagoras, 
and by Aristotle: see physica iv vii. 

5. r\ TTJS iriXifo-tws |vvo8os] cf. 
Phaedo 97 A rj iW5os roC TrXrjfflov dXXi}- 
\<av reOrjvai. 

g. |ATa{3oXXov Yap TO p.e'-ye9osl For 
example, particles of fire, by being trans- 
formed into particles of water, not only 
changed their magnitude, but also the 
region of space to which they belonged. 
Hence any fire in the home of fire which 
became water would instantly struggle 
to reach the home of water ; and similarly 
with air and water; so that a perpetual 
flux and reflux is kept up between one 
region and another. In this manner the 
production of heterogeneity 



no vacant space to be left. Therefore fire penetrates most of 
all through all things, and in the second degree air, since it is 
second in fineness, and the rest in proportion. For the sub- 
stances which are formed of the largest parts have the most 
void left in their structure, and those made of the smallest have 
the least. Now the constriction of this contracting force thrusts 
the small particles into the interspaces between the larger : so 
that when small are set side by side with great, and the lesser 
particles divide the greater, while the greater compress the 
smaller, all things keep rushing backwards and forwards to their 
own region; since in changing its bulk each changes its proper 
position in space. Thus owing to these causes a perpetual dis- 
turbance of uniformity is always kept up and so preserves the 
perpetual motion of matter now and henceforth without cessation. 
XXIV. Next we must remember that of fire there are many 
kinds: for instance flame and that effluence from flame, which 
burns not but gives light to the eyes, and that which remains in 
the embers when the flame is out And so with air : the purest 

TOS ytveffis) is maintained, and the per- tides is gold, an offshoot of which is 

adamant. A metal resembling gold, but 
harder owing to an admixture of earth, is 
bronze. And so we might describe all 
the rest, following our theory of proba- 
bility, which serves us as a harmless 
and rational diversion in the intervals of 
more serious speculations. To proceed : 
when water is mingled with fire and flows 
freely, we call it liquid: but when fire 
abandons it and the surrounding air com- 
presses and solidifies it, according to the 
degree of solidification we call it on the 
earth ice or hoar-frost, in the air hail or 
snow. The forms of water which circu- 
late in the structure of plants we call in 
general sap: four only have peculiar 
names, wine, oil, honey, and verjuice. 

14. TO T OTTO TTJS ifAoY 05 diriov] The 
reading diriitv is unquestionably right 
although confirmed by only one ms. and 
by Galen. Plato then regards light as an 
effluence, issuing from the flame ; the third 
species of fire being the red glow left in 
the embers when the flame has burnt down. 

1 6. avrow] sc. irupo's. 


petuation of motion secured. Compare 
Aristotle de gen. et corr. II x 337* 7 oytta 
5 8rj\ov CK rovrtav o rt^es caropovaiv, 5td 
rl fKacrrov TUIV ffu/j-drw eh rty 
(pepofj-tvov xupav kv T<f> dirftp<f) 
ov ditffTdffi ret ffw/J.ara. oitriov y&p TOVTOV 
effrlv 17 eis a\X?;\a /xerd/Sacris' el y&p 
rrj avrov 'X&PQ Ka ^ W 

/xeTa/3aXXet nev ovv 5id TTJV 
<f>opav 5iir\i)v ovffav dia. dt TO jUera/Jd\Xetj> 
ofiK tvSexerai fjAveiv otiSev avruv ev OVQC/J.IO. 

580 60 B, c. xxiv. Of fire there are 
three kinds, the flame, the light radiated 
from it, and the glow remaining after the 
flame is extinct. Of air there are many 
kinds, the purest being aether, the gross- 
est mist and cloud. Water falls into two 
main classes, liquid and fusible : the first 
is ever unstable and flowing; the second 
is hard and compact, but can be fused 
and liquefied by the action of fire aided 
by air. Of fusible water that which is 
formed of the finest and most even par- 



[58 D- 

evayea-rarov eTrttcXrjv alOrjp tcaXovpevos, ?j Be 0o\epwraro<; O/LU 
re KOI oveoTO9, erepa re dvcovvfjia eiBrj yeyovora Bid rr)v TWV Tpi- 
yatvwv avMTOTijTa. rd Be vSaTos 8i%f? fJ*ev irpwrov, TO fiev vypov, 
TO Be %VTOV yevos avTOV. TO pev ovv vypov Sid TO fiTe%ov elvai 

5 TWV yevwv TWV vBaTOS, ova fffiitcpd, dvi<ra>v OVTCOV, tcivrjTov avTO 
T teaff 1 avTO teal VTT aXXov Sid TT}V dvw/jLaXoTrjTa teal TTJV TOV 
o~')(ij[j,aTos IBeav jeyove* TO Be etc fj,eyd\Q)v ical 6/j,a\o)v (TTaari^w- E 
Tepov fjuev etceivov teal /3apv ^7777705 VTTO 6/iaXoT77T05 ecrriv, viro Be 
Trupo? elo~LWTO<> teal Sia\voi>TO<> avro TTJV 6fia\OTr)Ta [aTroySaXXet, 

10 TavTijv Be] aTroXecrai/ /iertV^et fjua\\ov Kivr)(rews, yevopevov Be 
evtcivrjTOV, VTTO TOV TT\i]<Tiov aepo? ooOovfievov teal Karareivopevov 
ir\ yijv, TijKea-0ai fj,ev Trjv TWV oytcwv teaOaipeaiv, porjv Be 

eirl <yf)v eirwvvf^iav eteaTepov TOV irddov^ eXaySe. 7rd\iv 

Be etcTrlTTTOVTos avToOev TOV irvpo^, are ovte et9 teevov e&ovTos, 59 A 
15 (oOovfievos 6 7r\r}(Tt,ov drjp evteivrjTov ovra ert TOV v<ypov oyteov eis 
9 TOV TTu/309 eBpas ffvvtodwv avTov avT(p ^v/Afjiiyvvo-w 6 Be gvvw- 
diro\aiJ,fBdva)v re Trjv 6fjLa\OTijTa 7rd\iv, are rot) Trjs 
SrjfjLiovpyov Trvpos aTriovTos, et? ravTov ainw tcaOi- 
<TTaTai' teal T^V pev TOV Trvpos aTraXXaj^v "^v^iv, Trjv Be %vvoBov 
20 aTreXOovTOS etceivov TreTrrjybs elvai 761/09 Trpoa-epprjOrj. TOVTWV Srj 
, o<ra %vra TrpocreLTro^ev vBaTa, TO fiev etc XeirTOTaTfov teal B 

5 Kivt]TOv : KivrjriKbv AH. 9 diro/SdXXei, ro.\iri\v 52 habet corr. A. omittunt SZ. 
13 Ka.TO.Ta.ff iv : Karda-Tafftv A. 19 TTJV fj^v : Tbv n& H per typographi incuriam. 

10 dire\9ovTOS tKetvov : tKeivov dire\06vTO$ S. 21 \ourbv post Tb fdv habet A. 

TIJ y-Q ffwiffTa/J^vwv TO, fj.v iffTiv i/5aroy, 
Ta 5^ yijs- vSaroj nv ret /j.fra\\fv6fj.eva, 
KaOdirep apyvpos ical xP v(r ^ s Ka -t TaXXa. 

5. TWV YVWV TWV v'SaTos] This 
seems a very strange phrase to denote the 
corpuscules which constitute water : ought 
we perhaps to read TUV fj,epuv ? 

9. T^V 6(ioX6Tr|Ta <liroX^rav] Mar- 
tin quite mistakes the meaning of this. 
He supposes that fire has the power of 
dilating the elementary triangles and so 
introducing a difference of size in the 
corpuscules of water. This can in no 
wise be admitted by the theory. Plato's 
meaning is that the particles of fire by 
interposing themselves between those of 
water, to which they are of course greatly 
inferior in size, destroy the homogeneous- 

i. aHhqp Ka\ov(Avos] Hence it is 
evident that Plato did not regard aether 
as a distinct element: cf. Phaedo in A, 
where aWty is simply the pure air of 
which our atmosphere is the sediment. 

opCx^il tal O-KOTOS] This is the dr?p 
fttg. fvorAj of 61 c. 

3. rA ji^v trypov, ri 8e \vr6v] The 
vypbv includes all fluids which are ordi- 
narily so regarded by us : that is to say, 
all substances which at the normal tem- 
perature are liquid and flowing: xnTdi* 
comprises metals, which are normally 
solid but are liquefied by the application 
of strong heat. To rank metals as forms 
of water seems no doubt a strange classifi- 
cation : it is however adopted by Theo- 
phrastos also: see de lapidibus i TUV iv 

59 B] TIMAI02. 213 

is that which is called by the name of aether, and the most 
turbid is mist and gloom ; and there are other kinds which have 
no name, arising from the inequality of the triangles. Of water 
there are two primary divisions, the liquid and the fusible kind. 
The liquid sort owes its nature to possessing the smaller kinds 
of watery atoms, unequal in size ; and so it can readily either 
move of itself or be moved by something else, owing to its lack 
of uniformity and the peculiar shape of its atoms. But that 
which consists of larger and uniform particles is more stable 
than the former and heavy, being stiffened by its uniformity: 
but when fire enters into it and breaks it up, it loses its uni- 
formity and gains more power of motion : and as soon as it has 
become mobile, it is thrust by the surrounding air and spread 
out upon the earth: and it has received names descriptive of 
either process, melting of the dissolution of the mass, flowing 
of the extension on the ground. But when the fire goes forth 
from it again, seeing that it does not issue into empty space, the 
neighbouring air receives a thrust, and while the liquid mass is 
still mobile, it forces it to fill up the vacant places of the fire and 
unites it with itself. And being thus compressed and recovering 
its uniformity, seeing that fire the creator of inequality is 
quitting it, it settles into its normal state. And the departure of 
fire we call cooling, and the contraction that ensues on its with- 
drawal we class as solidification. Of all the substances which 
we have ranked as fusible kinds of water, that which is densest 

ness of the whole mass. At the same we call flowing. 

time, by the interposition of the fiery 13. irdXiv 8' tKirfrnrovros] Solidifi- 

particles its bulk is expanded, so that cation is explained thus. The particles 

it comes into forcible collision with the of fire, on quitting their place amid those 

surrounding air, which gives it the of water, thrust against the immediately 

impulse that sheds it (/raTarekei) on surrounding particles of air, since of 

the ground. It now is subject to the course there is no vacant space to receive 

same conditions as vypbv vdwp, which them. Now the metal, though the fire 

flows owing to the inequality of its own has left it, is still mobile and yielding, 

particles. Thus the fusion and flowing because its particles are dislocated. The 

of molten metal is due to two causes : air then, on the impulse of the outgoing 

(1) the intrusion of particles of fire and fire, thrusts against the metal and corn- 
consequent dislocation of the particles of presses it, forcing its particles to fill up 
water, rendering the mass dv<a/j.a\ot> and the vacancies left by the fire. Thereby 
therefore evKlvrfrov this we call melting; the particles are restored to their old 

(2) the yielding of the now heterogeneous places and the metal regains its equi- 
substance to the pressure of the air, which librium and solidity. 

2I 4 


[59 B- 

6fj,a\(0rdTQ)v rrvKvbrarov yiyvoftevov, povoeiBes 761/09, o-n'X/Soz/Tt KOI 
gav0q> 'xpwfiari KotvwOev, rt,p,a\<^eo-rarov Krrjfjia 'xpvaos r)0r)(*vo<; 
Bid Trerpas errcvyr)' %pv(rov Be oo9, Bid TTVKVorijTa <TK\,riporarov ov 
Kal fjLe\av0ev, aSa/u,a9 eK\rj6rj. TO 6 6771)9 f*>ev %pv<rov rwv pepwv, 

5 1877 Be 7rXeoi/a ez/09 e%oy, TrvKVorijTi 8' en yttei/ %pvo-ov rcvKvbrepov 
ov, Kal 7*79 fj,6piov 6\iyov real XeTrroi/ /jberaa-^ov, ware a-K\r}porepov C 
elvai, To3 8e fjLjd\a euros avrov SiaXef/i/nara. e^eiv Kov<f>6repov, rwv 
\afirrpwv Trrj/croov re ev 761/09 vSdrcov ^a\/co9 crvaraOels yeyove' 
TO 8' etc 7^9 aura) fjLi%0ev, orav TraXaioy/iei/w Bia^wpi^rjo-Bov Tfd\LV 

10 OTT' a\X?;Xa)i/, e'/c^>ai/69 a^' auro yiyvofjievov ^09 \eyeTat. raXXa 
Se T(3i/ TOLOVTWV ov8ev TTOLKL\OV en Sia\oyicrao~0ai Trjv rwv eltcbrwv 
ftvOojv fieraSiwicovTa ISeav, fjv orav Tt9 dvaTravo-eax; evetca TOVS 
Trepl TWV OVTWV del KaraTi0fjievo<; \6yovs 7-01)9 7epeo-ea>9 Trept Sta- D 
^6(w/i.6i/09 elrcoTas dfJLeTafieXtjTov rjSovrjv /crarat, perpiov av ev ro5 

15 /3i'p 7rcu8tdv Kal <j>povtfj,ov Trototro. TavTy Br) Kal TO. vvv e<j)evTe<; 
TO perd TOVTO TOJV avTwv rcepv rd 6^9 elKora Bufj,ev rfjBe. TO irvpl 

4 tK\r,6r) omittit A. 5 5* ri : 5^ rg A. omittunt SZ. 13 Kara.TiOtiJ.evos : 

SZ. 15 TrcwSidj' : jratSeiai' A. IfovTes : dtpfrres AZ. 

comes auri, nee nisi in auro nasci vide- 
batur. The six kinds he goes on to de- 
scribe are evidently all crystals. It is 
clear that Plato's xP vff v <>foj was not 
a crystal: for the term dSci/ias is not 
applied to any precious stone by writers 
before Theophrastos ; moreover a crystal 
could not be a species of X VT " vSup, all 
such being forms of earth. Professor W. 1 
J. Lewis, who has been kind enough to 
make some inquiry into this matter on my i 
behalf, formed the opinion, on such data 
as I was able to lay before him, that 
Plato's a8a/ was probably haematite. 

5. ITVKVOTTJTI 8' ?TI [i^v] This is ' 
Baiter's conjecture, followed by Her- 
mann. I have adopted it as possibly 
accounting for the rrj ptv of A. 

7. prydXa Ivros 8ua\(Ji(i,aTa] These 
would appear to be cavities in the sub- 
stance of the metal filled with air, which 
cause bronze, notwithstanding its superior 
density, to be lighter than gold. Plato 
is of course mistaken in supposing that 
bronze is denser than gold. He attri- 

i . crrfXpovn KaV |av6w] ' infused 
with a glittering and yellow hue." (rr/\j3ov, 
as Lindau says, is a x/^* coordinate with 
t-avOtv : its ytveffts is described in 68 A. 

3. xP wr0 '' ^ oos] What this sub- 
stance was it is very difficult to determine, 
further than that it is some hard dark 
metal always found, as Plato supposes, 
with gold and closely akin to it It is 
mentioned again in Politicus 303 E yuerd 
S ravra \eiverai ^Vfj-fj^fuyfJifva TO. !-vyyevrj 
ToO xpwrov rlfjua KO! irvpl fwvov d<f>aiperd, 
Xa\/c6s /ecu apyvpos, (<TTI 8' ore Kal aSdyuas. 
In Hesiod Scut. Her. 137, 231, and 
Theog. 161 it signifies a hard metal, pro- 
bably something like steel, of which 
armour and cutting instruments were 
made. This cannot be meant here, far 
less a mixture of copper and gold, as 
Stallbaum thinks. Pliny not. hist, xxxvii 
15 says maximum in rebus humanis, non 
solum inter gemmas, pretium habet ada- 
mas, diu non nisi regibus et iis admodum 
paucis cognitus ; ita appellabatur auri 
nodus in metallis repertus perquam raro, 

D] TIMAIOS. 215 

and formed of the finest and most uniform particles, a unique 
kind, combining brightness with a yellow hue, is gold, a most 
precious treasure, which has filtered through rocks and there 
congealed : and the ' offspring of gold ', which is extremely hard 
owing to its density and has turned black, is called adamant. 
Another has particles resembling those of gold, but more than 
one kind; in density it even surpasses gold and has a small 
admixture of fine earth, so that it is harder, but lighter, because 
it has large interstices within ; this formation is one of the 
shining and solid kinds of water and is called bronze. The 
earth which is mingled with it, when the two through age begin 
to separate again, becomes visible by itself and is named rust. 
And it were no intricate task to explain all the other substances 
of this kind, following the outline of our probable account. 
For if we pursue this as a recreation, and while laying down the 
principles of eternal being find in plausible theories of becoming 
a pleasure that brings no remorse in its train, we may draw from 
it a sober and sensible amusement during our life. Now there- 
fore setting out in this way let us go on to discuss the proba- 
bilities that lie next on the same subject 

bated the greater hardness of bronze the plainest terms Plato's opinion of the 

partly to its superior density, partly to value of physical science. In itself it 

the admixture of earth: he was not is but a harmless recreation, a pleasure 

aware that hardness does not depend leaving behind it no regrets, with which 

upon density. As to the StaXefyt/ttaTct, a philosopher may reasonably solace him- 

compare Theophrastos de sensu 61, self, when wearied with his incessant 

speaking of Demokritos, aKKyporepov fdv struggle after the truth. This passage 

elvai ffLSrjpov f}apfrrepoi> 8t /M\vfldov TOV should be read in connexion with 68 E 

lv y&p fflSypov &v<i>fi.&\us ffvyne'iff6ai Ka.1 810 ST) xH W alTlasetdr)diopie(rOaiK.T.\., 

rb Kfvbv f\eiv iro\\axv Kal Kara peydXa where we learn that the study of dvay- 

Kal Kard tvia * , dirXws Si Kaiov, that is to say, of the forces of 

evbv TOV 8t poXvpSov l\aTTov material nature, is useful just so far as it 

Kevbv d/toXws vvyKeiffdai Kara TTO.V bears upon the investigation of Oelov, that 

opolw, Sib paptrepov ph /aaXa/cwrepov 5 is, of primary causes. Physical specu- 

TOV ffid-qpov. This is identical with Plato's lations then are profitable only in so far 

view, except that Demokritos held the as they can be made subservient to meta- 

cavities to be absolutely void. physical science ; to suppose that they 

9. STO.V ira\aiov|x^vw 8iax<op^1<r- have any intrinsic merit is an egregious 

8ov] Plato considered that the rust on error : they can only be pursued for their 

bronze, or verdigris, was the intermingled own sake with a view to recreation. As 

earth, which in course of time works its regards the construction there is a slight 

way to the surface. anacoluthon ; ijv being presently super- 

13. fjv OTCIV TIS] Here we have in seded by TOI>J yevfofw trtpi. 



[59 D 

vBcop, o<rov \TTTOV vypov re Bid rrjv Kivr)<riv teal rrjv 
6B6v, rjv KvXivBovpevov eVt 7779 vypov \eyerai, pa\aKov re av rtp 
Ta9 ySacret? tfrrov eBpaiovs ov<ra<; rj ra? 7779 vTreiiceiv, rovro orav 
Trvpos d7ro%(0pio-0ev ae/309 re povwOf}, yeyove /JLCV 6p,a\(arepov y E 
5 j*vve<t)<rrai Be VTTO rwv e^iovrcov et? avro, Trayev re ovrws TO pev 
VTrep 7779 fut\ia"ra iraOov ravra %d\aa, TO S' eirl yrjs Kpv<TTa\\o<;, 
TO Se rjTTOv TyfjMTrayes re ov eri, TO /ley v?re/3 yf 9 av %i(av, TO 8' eTU 
e/c Spoo-ov yevopevov ira^vrj Xeyerat,. ra Se Sr) 
t'S?; n,ep,iyp,eva d\\ij\oi<;, %vfj,7rav p,ev TO yevos, 
10 8t Tc3i/ e; 7^9 (JJVTMV riOijpeva, %f//-ot \ey6pevot' 8ta Be T9 /it^et? 60 A 
ai/o/iotoTT/Ta e/cao-TOt o-^WT69 Ta /u-ey aXXa vroXXa dvwvvfia yevr) 
Trapea-%ovTO, rerrapa Be, oaa epirvpa eiBij, Bia<f>avf) fiakucrra yevo- 
peva i\r)<f>ev 6v6fj,ara avrwv, TO /*ei/ T^9 tywxfis fierd rov o-a>/j,aro<; 
0epfj,avriKoi> oti>o9, TO Be \eiov ical BiatcpirtKov otyecos Bid ravrd re 
15 IBeiv \afA7rpov ical <rri\{3ov \frrap6v re (f>avra%ofj,evov e\.aiijpov 
eJSo9, Trirra fcal Kitci /cat e\aiov avro ocra T aXXa T^9 auT^9 
OGOV Be Bia^vriKov f^e^pi <f>va-eci)<; rwv irepl TO arofia B 

2 ai5 rf : airnj? A. 
9 rcDv ante iiSdruv habet A. 

I. o<rov Xeirriv vypov TC] Although 
Stallbaum asserts that this sentence is 
'turpi labe contaminatus ', I see no ne- 
cessity for alteration: his own attempts 
are certainly far from fortunate. The 
repetition of vyp6v, which offends him 
so sorely, is, I think, due to the fact 
that we have, as Lindau saw, an ety- 
mology implied in the words fy... Mytrcu 
'the mode of rolling on the earth which 
has in fact gained it the name of vyp6v ' : 
as if vypbv = inrtp yfjs ptov. Thus under- 
stood, the objection to the second vypov 
vanishes. /j.a\aKov re is then coordinate 
with \eirrttv vypov re, and Tfi...viretKiv 
with Sia Try Kivi)fftv. 

4. irvpds diroxttpwrOfr] Water then 
in its pure and unmixed form is in a 
state of congelation : the liquid condition 
being due to the intermixture of fire 
which disturbs the uniformity of the 
whole. What we ordinarily term water 
then is a compound of fire and water. 

d*'pos TC] It is rather hard to see 

3 TOVTO : TOVTO tf S. 
1 6 JC/KI : nj/cet A pr. m. 

what air has to do with the matter : no 
air entered into the composition of the 
vypbv vdup, which merely yielded to the 
impact of the air which pushed it from 
without. May not atpos re be an inter- 
polation from the hand of some copyist 
who thought it necessary to separate 
water from both the kindred elements? 
The copyists have an unconquerable de- 
sire to drag in all the elements, whether 
they are wanted or not: see note on 61 B, 
where there is an indisputable interpo- 

5. VTTO TWV |IOVTV] That is to 
say, by the agency of the outgoing fire 
that thrusts the surrounding air, which 
in turn communicates the impulse to the 
water. Plato classifies the congealed 
forms of water according to the intensity 
of the compression and to the situation : 
when completely condensed it is on the 
earth ice, in the air hail; if partially con- 
densed, it is on the earth hoar-frost, in 
the air snow. 

60 B] TIMAIO2. 217 

Water mingled with fire, such as is rare and liquid (owing to 
its mobility and its way of rolling along the ground, which gets 
it the name of liquid), and is also soft, because its bases give way, 
being less stable than those of earth, when relinquished by fire 
and deserted of air, becomes more uniform and is compressed 
by the outgoing elements ; thus it is congealed, and when above 
the earth this process takes place in an extreme degree, the result 
is hail ; if upon the earth, it is ice : but when the process has not 
gone so far but leaves it half-congealed, above the earth it is snow, 
and when congealed from dew upon the earth, it is called hoar- 
frost. Most forms of water, which are intermingled with one 
another, filtered through the plants of the earth, are called by the 
class-name of saps ; but owing to their intermixture they are all of 
diverse natures and the great multitude of them are accordingly 
unnamed : four kinds however which are of a fiery nature, being 
more conspicuous, have obtained names : one that heats the soul 
and body together, namely wine ; next a kind which is smooth 
and divides the visual current and therefore appears bright and 
shining to view and glistening, I mean the class of oils, resin 
and castor oil and olive oil itself and all others that have the 
same properties ; thirdly that which expands the contracted 

7. rd Si ^TTOV] sc. iradbv TOVTO. Cf. SioKpirucbv 6\f/eu3 is white. 6\f/is here = 
Aristotle meteorologica I x 347* 16 iraxw) ctyews peu/ia. 

ltv orav T] arid? irayr, irplv th v8up <rvy- 16. KKI] This is castor oil, obtained 

KpiOrjvai Trd\u>. from the Ricinus communis. See He- 

8. rot 84 81) irXcwrra] A complex rodotus II 94, where he says that the 
form of water, composed of many sorts Egyptians use this oil for anointing them- 
combined, are the juices of plants of selves and for illuminating purposes : it 
which the general appellation is sap. is said to be still put to the latter use in 
Of these Plato distinguishes four kinds, India. The word K(KI is affirmed by He- 
having peculiar properties and specific rodotus to be Egyptian. Cf. Pliny nat. 
names. hist, xv 7. 

12. Sa-a. {(jLirvpa tt8t]] Plato infers 17. o<rov 8i 8ia\vTiK6v fw'XP 1 <|>v<ra>s] 

the presence of fire from the brightness The construction and meaning of these 

and transparency of these saps, not words seem to have escaped all the 

from any pungent or burning quality, editors, r&v irfpl rb ffTopa ^vvoSuv de- 

which olive oil, for example, does not pends upon SiaxuriKov, not upon <f>v<reus, 

possess. and the meaning is ' that which expands 

14. 8io.KpiTi.K6v otyews] That is to the contracted pores of the mouth to 

say, having a bright and glistening ap- their natural condition'. In 640 we 

pearance, see 68 E, 69 A. We must un- learn that a pleasurable sensation is the 

derstand Plato to mean 5ia.Kpirud>i> otyews perceptible transition from an abnormal 

for what is merely to a normal state: TO 5' e/j Qwiv diribv 

218 HAATONO2 [60 B 

%Vv68(i)V, TaVTp TT) 8wdfJ,l, jXvKVT'TjTa Trap%6fJLVOV, fJi\l TO KttTa 

TrdvTfov /j,d\icrTa 7rpoo~prjfj,a ecr^e 1 TO 8e TT)^ trap/co? 8ia\VTtKov TU> 
Kaietv d(f)pa>8es 761/05 e'/c Trdvrcav d<f>opio~6ev TWV ^vp.wv OTTO? eVw- 

XXV. TTJS Se io~r), TO fiev Jjdvjfjievov Sid #oWo<? ToiyBe 
\idivov. TO u/iynt<ye<? v8(op OTav ev Trj i 
et<? depo? I8eav yev6/j,vo<t 8e dr)p et<? TOV 
TOTTOV dvaOet. KCVOV 8' ov Trepiefyev avTOv ov8ev TOV ovv TrXycrlov 
eaxrev depa- 6 8e are wv ftapvs, caa-Oel? KOI Trepi'xyOeis TW r^? 7^? 
10 OJKW, o-^oSpa eO\i^ gvvewo-e re avTov et? ra? eSpas, oOev dvr/ei 6 
drfp' ^vvaxj'deio'a 8e UTT' ae/jo? 'd\vT(a<> v&arl yfj vvio~TaTai 
, Ka\\iwv fj.ev r\ TWV lawv Kal ofiaXwv Sta^a^^? fiepwv, 
8e r) evavTia. TO Be VTTO irvpo^ ra^oi/9 TO voTepov irav 

ttn>&* *<: , 'A>s * " 

8 ov wepieixev O.VTOV : sic corr. A. virepelxev avrwv pr. m. 
10 dvyet: dvyeiv SZ. 

3 Kaleiv : Kdeu> SZ. 

bov -^66: and in 66 C we find 
that this is just the effect produced on 
the tongue by a pleasant taste : rd 3 
Trapa 0i5<rti' ^weorwra ^ Kexv^va, rd ptv 
wa7?7, TCI 8^ x a ^?> Ka ^ ""aVfl' o TI fj.d\t,ffra 
lSp6y Kara <t>i><riv. For the use of Siax"? 
compare 45 E, Philebus 46 E; and for 
w65<ai> see 586, 59 A, and 6 1 A. Com- 
pare also Theophrastos de sensu 84 TO 
5^ fftiv rrj vypOTrjTi ry iv rfi yXwrrr) Kal 
Kal ffVffTariKa eh T^V <pv<riv 

3. oir6s] This is another substance 
which it seems impossible precisely to 
identify. Martin understands opium; 
but this in no wise agrees with the de- 
scription. It rather is some powerful 
vegetable acid, perhaps the juice of the 
silphium, as in Hippokrates de morbis 
acutis vol. II p. 92 Kiihn. In Homer 
Iliad V 902 it is a liquid used for curd- 
ling milk, said to be the juice of the 
wild fig : see Aristotle historia animalium 
III xx 522 b 2 Trriyvvcri Si r6 70X0 6jros re 
ffVKijs Kal TTverla: cf. meteorologica IV vii 
384 a 20 : see too Pliny natural history 
xvi 72, xxin 63. The name would 
seem to have been applied to vegetable 
acids in general, not confined to the sap 

of one particular plant : wherefore, al- 
though I have acquiesced in the usual 
explanation of K ndvruv a<f>opia6tv rdv 
Xvuuv, it is a question to my mind 
whether Thomas Taylor is not more 
correct in rendering these words 'is se- 
creted from all liquors'. For 6ir6s is no 
more 'distinguished' from the other saps 
than are wine, oil and honey; if any- 
thing, less so. I have adopted the term 
' verjuice ' as the nearest rendering I 
could find, although this, I believe, is 
properly confined to the juice of the wild 

60 B 6 1 C, c. xxv. The chief forms 
of earth are as follows : (i) stone is 
formed when in a mixture of earth and 
water the water is resolved into air and 
issues forth ; then the earth that remains 
behind is strongly compressed by the 
surrounding air and compacted into a 
rocky substance : (2) earthenware or pot- 
tery is produced in a similar way, except 
that the expulsion of the water is much 
more violent and sudden through the ac- 
tion of fire, and therefore the substance 
produced is more brittle than the former : 
(3) the so-called ' black stone ' is formed 
when a certain portion of water is left 




pores of the mouth to their natural condition, and by this 
property produces sweetness to the taste, of this honey is the 
most general appellation ; lastly that which corrodes the flesh 
by burning, a sort of frothy substance, distinct from all the other 
saps, which has been named verjuice. 

XXV. Of the different kinds of earth, that which is strained 
through water becomes a stony mass in the following way. 
When the commingled water is broken up in the mixing, it 
changes into the form of air ; and having become air it darts up 
to its own region. Now there was no void surrounding it ; ac- 
cordingly it gives a thrust to the neighbouring air. And the air, 
being weighty, when it is thrust and poured around the mass of 
earth, presses it hard and squeezes it into the spaces which the 
new-made air quitted. Thus earth, when compressed by air 
into a mass that will not dissolve in water, forms stone ; of 
which the transparent sort made of equal and uniform particles 
is fairer, while that of the opposite kind is less fair. But that 

behind, rendering the stone fusible by 
fire : (4) alkali and salt are composed of 
a mixture of earth and water, consisting 
of fine saline particles of earth from which 
a large part of the water has been ex- 
pelled, but which has never been tho- 
roughly compacted, so that the substance 
is soluble in water : (5) there remain 
compounds of earth and water which 
are fusible by fire, but not soluble in 
water. The reason why this is so is as 
follows : Earth in its unmodified form is 
dissoluble by water alone ; for its inter- 
stices are large enough to give free passage 
to the particles of earth and fire : but the 
larger particles of water, forcing their 
way in, break up the mass. Earth highly 
compressed can only be dissolved by fire, 
for nothing else can find entrance. Water, 
when most compacted, can be dissolved 
by fire alone ; when in a less degree, by 
fire or air. The highest condensation of 
air can only be dissolved by conversion 
into another element ; the less condensed 
forms are affected by fire only. Now 
into a compound of earth and water the 
particles of water from without can find 

no entrance : but fire entering in dislocates 
the particles of water, and they dislocate 
the particles of earth, so that the whole 
compound is broken up and fused. Such 
substances are, if water predominates in 
the compound, glass and the like ; if 
earth, all kinds of wax. 

7. Koirg] sc. Kara TO. rpiyuva. The 
water, becoming air, rushes to join the 
surrounding air; which then thrusts the 
earth together, exactly as described in 
the solidification of metals, 59 A. 

11. dXvTws vSari] There can be little 
doubt, I think, that these words are to 
be taken together, ' insoluble by water '. 
Martinjoins SSari withww<r0e?<ra, 'forced 
into indissoluble union with water '. But 
Plato does not say that any of the water 
is left behind ; and we find that when this 
takes place, the substance is fusible by 
fire, which is not here the case. Nor is 
it easy to see how such an inseparable 
conjunction could exist. The phrase seems 
pretty clearly contrasted with \VTU TrdXiv 
i)0' uSaros in D. 

12. i] TWV fo-wv] i.e. precious stones 
and crystals. It is clear from this that 



[60 c 

> Kal Kpavporepov eKelvov gvcrrdv, eS yevei Kepajwv eV&>- 
TOVTO yeyovev etrri Be ore voriBos V7ro\ei(f>0ia"r)<> YVTT) 
777 yevouevr) Bid Try/309, orav tyv%0fj, ylyverai TO /j,e\av ^pm/Mi 
e^wv \L6o<f r<a 8' av Kara ravrd fiev ravra CK gvpfilgecos vBaros 
5 aTrofAovovaevQ) TroXXoO, \7rrorpa>v Be CK 7779 fjuepdov d~\,fjuvpo) re 
ovre rifiLTrayrf yevofievm Kal \vrca 7rd\iv v<f> vBaros, TO pev e\aiov 
Kal 7779 KaOapriKov 761/09 \irpov, TO 8' evdpf^ocrrov ev Tat9 KOI- 
v(oviai$ rat9 vrept T^y rov crrofAaros aiaQi](Tiv d\wv Kara \6yov 
vofjiov 0eo(f>i\e<$ awfjua eyevero. rd Be KOIVCL eg dfttyoiv vBan /j,ev 

3 ylyverai : yeyove S. 4 %x uv ' ^X ot> HSZ. \l&os : eI5os H e sua coniectura. 
TW et cetera dualis numeri scrips! e Schneideri coniectura. r< ceteraque con- 
cordantia HSZ. ret A, qui tamen in sequentibus dativum habet. 

d5d/xas cannot be the diamond or any xP^ av /J-erafiaXXeiv Kal r-t\v irvKv6rr)Ta, fd- 


other crystal. 

i. apira<rOlv] The construction with 
this verb seems unique, though it is of 
course common with QaipelaOai. The 
rapid evaporation of the water by fire 
and the consequent sudden violence of 
the compression causes the pottery to be 
hard and brittle. For the rather elaborate 
form of expression $ ytvei ..TOVTO ytyovev 
cf. 40 B Ka.06.irep tv rots irp6ff0ev tp/rfiOrj, 
/car' ^Keiva yeyove. 

i. \vrf\ Y^ Y VO K^ VT l] The reason 
why the continuance of moisture in the 
stone renders it fusible by fire is ex- 
plained below at 61 B. 

3. TO p.e'Xav xpH-a ^XCDV XiOosl There 
is evidently some corruption in the text 
of the mss. The vulgate fyov cannot be 
construed at all : &xwv is supported by A, 
but the article is not wanted with fd\av 
Xpw/u.a. Hermann restores grammar by 
writing eZSos for \tOos; yet this is not 
convincing. Nor yet can I acquiesce in 
the suggestion of the translator in the 
Engelmann edition, to read \l9ov, sup- 
plying 7&oj from the previous sentence. 
Retaining ?x.wt>, we might perhaps insert 
6 before T& (d\av XP^M - As to the nature 
of this yitAas Xi0oj, it would seem to be 
a substance of volcanic origin, probably 
lava. Compare Theophrastos de lapidibus 
140 5 \iirapcuos 4K<f>opovrat re rrj Kowret 
KCU 7^erat Kiffi)poei8ys, uxrO' a/ta re TT\V 

Xas re 701^ Kal Xet6s effTt, Kal irvKvbs aKavvros 
<2>v. This Xt7ro/)a?os is a volcanic stone 
from the Lipari islands, which Theo- 
phrastos classes among the irvpl rrjKrd : 
on being subjected to the action of fire it 
leaves a residuum which is light and 
porous like pumice stone. The descrip- 
tion of it while still a/cawros seems to 
agree very well with Plato's /^Xas \LOos. 
Compare too Aristotle meteorologica iv vi 
3^3 b 5 T^Kerai 8 Kal o \l0os 6 Trupfyxaxos, 
ware ffrdfeiv Kal pew" rb 8e infjyvviJ.evov 
orav pvrj, iraXiv ylyverai <rK\t]p6v, Kal al 
/j.v\ai rrfKovrai wore peiv rt> 8 peov irqyvv- 
pevov rb fj.ev xpw^ia fifXav. The /tu'Xeu 
certainly were made of lava : see Strabo 
vi ii 3,'where he says of the matter ejected 
from the Liparaean craters, vffrepov Se 
TrayTJvai. Kal yeveffffai rots fj.v\lrais X^otJ 
eoiKora rbv wayov. It is to be observed 
that Theophrastos assigns the same cause 
as Plato for the fusibility of some stones : 
see de lapidibus 10 r6 yap T-TIKTOV eviK- 
/JLOV elvai 5ei Kal vyporfir' ?x el " irXe/w. 

4. TW 8' aiJ] Schneider's correction 
seems indispensable : I can see no rea- 
sonable way of construing the dative : 
and why the Engelmann translator de- 
clares the emendation to be ' zum Nach- 
theil des Sinnes' I cannot understand. 
Soda and salt are compounds of earth 
and water only partially compacted and 
consequently soluble in water; which is 



which is suddenly deprived of all its moisture by the rapid 
action of fire and is become more brittle than the first forms 
the class to which we have given the name of earthenware. 
Again when some moisture is left behind, earth, after having 
been fused by fire and again cooled, becomes a certain stone 
of a black colour. There are also two sorts which in the 
same manner after the admixture are robbed of a great part 
of the water, being formed of the finer particles of earth with 
a saline taste, and becoming only half solid and soluble 
again by water; of these what purifies from oil and earth is 
alkali ; while that which easily blends with all the combinations 
of tastes on the palate is, in the words of the ordinance, the god- 
beloved substance of salt. The bodies which are composed of 

not the case with bodies wherein the 
water and earth have been brought into 
a complete and stable union. 

6. ri i&v IXafov Kal yijs] I do not 
know that soda is specially applicable to 
the elimination of earth, and the words 
Kal 7775 seem to me to be dubious. Lin- 
dau, imputing to Plato ' brevitatem prope 
similem Thucydidis ', somehow extracts 
from the words the manufacture of soap 
and of glass : but such more than Pythian 
tenebricosity of diction, I think, even 
Thucyclides would shrink from. By \lrpov 
we are to understand natron, or carbonate 
of soda. 

7. rA 8* tvdpjiOOTOV tv rats KOIVW- 
vCcus] By this Plato means that salt is an 
agreeable adjunct to many flavours and 
combinations of flavours. 

8. Kara Xo-yov vojiov] This seems 
plainly to indicate, what would in any 
case be a natural supposition, that Plato 
quotes the expression 6eo<pi\ts <rufj.a from 
some well-known ordinance relating to 
sacrificial ceremonies or from some for- 
mula used therein : but I have not been 
able to trace the phrase to any such 

9. OecxfuXis <r<3fia] The application 
of the epithet 0eo(f>i\ts to salt is, as afore- 
said, probably due to its use for sacrificial 
and ceremonial purposes, though this is 

not suggested by Plutarch in his curious 
little disquisition on the subject, quaest. 
conv. v 10. Salt was mixed with whole 
barley (oiXoxvrat) and sprinkled on the 
head of the victim. This appears to have 
been the only use of salt in sacrifice 
among the Greeks ; but both in ancient 
and modern times it was held to be a 
potent preservative against witchcraft and 
evil spirits, and many curious customs 
connected with it are to be found in me- 
diaeval folk-lore. It was likewise used in 
purifications see Theokritos xxiv 94 

irvpuffare 5<2(j.a Oeely 
irparov, tireiTa 5' a\e<r<ri fjiffjuy^vov, ws 



Homer terms it ' divine ', Iliad ix 214 
irdfffff ' dXos Oeloio. According to a fable 
mentioned by Aristotle meteorologica n 
iii 359 a 27 it was a gift of Herakles to 
the Chaonians. In Tacitus annals xm 57 
we read that a spot where salt is found 
was held by the ancient Germans to be 
peculiarly sacred and in proximity to 
heaven. The passage of Athenion (apud 
Athenaeum xiv 79) which Stallbaum 
quotes as establishing the sacrificial use 
of salt has an opposite tendency : 



[60 E 

ov \vrd, irvp\ Be, Bid ro roiovBe ovro) ^v/jnr^yvvrai' 7779 oyKOV? 
Trvp [tev dr)p re ov rr)Ki~ rrjs yap i<7Tacrea>9 rutv BiaKevav avrrj<; 
crfjiiKpofjuepecrrepa ire^vKora, Bid 7ro\\fj<> vpv%a>pia<; lovra, ov ftta- 
^ofieva, a\vrov avrrjv edcravra drrjKrov Trapeer^e' rd Be vBaro? 

5 eTreiBrj /Aeift> TretyvKe pepij, ftiaiov iroiovpeva rr)v BiegoBov, \vovra 
avrr)v TT}KI. yrjv fiev yap d^vararov VTTO /8ta? ovrws vBiop fj,6vov 61 A 
\vei, %vve<rTr]Kvlav Be 7r\r)V Trupo? ovBev e'l<roSo<; yap ovBevl 7r\ijv 
Trvpl \e\enrrai. rrjv Be vBaTos av gvvoBov rr^v pev ^laiorar^v 
7rvp fiovov, rrjv Be acrOevearepav dfi^orepa, 'jrvp re teal dr^p, Bia- 

10 %etrov, 6 /jiev Kara ra Btdiceva, TO Be KOI Kara rd rplywva. (Biq Be 
depa %vo-rdvra ovBev \vet 7r\rjv Kara ro o-roi%elov, dftiacrrov Be 
KararrfKei, /JLOVOV Trvp. rd Be Br) rwv ^Vjjbp>iKro>v K 7^9 re Kal 
vBaros crwfidrow, /JLe^piTrep dv vBwp avrov rd rrjs 7^9 BiaKeva Kal B 
)Sta gv/jwreTTiXrjfjLeva Kare^y, rd fiev vBaro? einovra ega>9ev eio-oBov 

15 OVK e^ovra fiepij Trepippeovra rov f 6\ov oyKov arrjKrov eiacre, rd Be 

%v/J:injyvvTai : 

80ev tri Kal vvv TUV 

TO?S Oeolfftv 6irr<2<nv (p\oyl 
aXas ov Trpocrdyovres' ov y&p rjffav ov- 

ek r-ffv rotauTTjf xp^ fftv 

Originally, says the author, men both 
ate and sacrificed without salt ; and even 
after they discovered that salt was good 
to eat, they went on sacrificing in the old 
way. Among some other nations, e.g. 
the Jews, salt was very extensively used 
for sacrificial purposes. 

TO. 8e Koi-vd ijj d|ju{>oiv] We now 
come to compounds of earth and water. 
We have indeed had already one such 
combination, which is \vrov v<f> #5aros: 
but there the water is hardly a constituent 
of the solidified mass; the substance has 
parted with nearly all its moisture, but 
still remains rifjuirayts. Before explain- 
ing why these compounds are dissoluble 
by fire alone, Plato digresses a little to 
explain the mode in which the several 
elements are dissolved. Solution and 

A. 3 <f>alverai ante ireipvKOTa habet A. 

7 irvpos : irvpl A. 

dilatation alone are treated here, not the 
transmutation of one element into an- 

i. Y 1 ! 5 o^ 1 * 01 * 5 ] Earth in its normal 
condition, a^vvTaros virb /3/as, is dissolved 
by water alone, for the interstices in its 
structure are so large that the minute 
particles of fire and air can pass in and 
out without obstruction and do not dis- 
turb the fabric: but those of water are 
too large to make their way without dis- 
locating the particles of earth. When 
however earth is firmly compacted, we- 
oTTjKina, the interstices are so small that 
only fire can find an entrance. 

8. TI^V \Av piau>TaTT|v] Clearly metals 
are meant. 

g. TIJV Si do-0V<rr^pav] Ice, snow, 
hail, and hoar-frost : cf. 59 E. Air dis- 
solves these Kara T& 5t&icet>a, i.e. by sepa- 
rating the particles; for ice or snow ex- 
posed to the air above a certain tempera- 
ture will melt; but it still retains the form 
of water. Fire on the other hand, may 
vaporise it; which means that the cor- 
puscules of water are dissolved and recon- 

61 B] TIMAIO2. 223 

earth and water combined cannot be dissolved by water, but 
by fire alone for the following reason. A mass of earth is 
resolved neither by fire nor by air, because their atoms are 
smaller than the interstices in its structure, so that they have 
abundant room to move in and do not force their way, wherefore 
instead of breaking it up they leave it undissolved : but whereas 
the parts of water are larger, they make their passage by force 
and dissolve the mass by breaking it up. Earth then, when it 
is not forcibly solidified, is thus dissolved by water only; but 
when it is solidified, only by fire, for no entrance is left except 
to fire. And of water the most forcible congelation is melted by 
fire alone, but the more feeble both fire and air break up ; the 
latter by the interstices, the former by the triangles as well. Air, 
when forcibly condensed, can only be resolved into the ele- 
mentary triangles, and when uncondensed fire alone dissolves 
it. In the case of a substance formed of water and earth com- 
bined, so long as water occupies the spaces in it that are 
forcibly compressed, the particles of water arriving from without 
find no entrance but simply flow round and leave the whole 

stituted as corpuscules of air : this is dis- air. Plato must have observed the fact 

solution Kara ra rplyuva. that air expands when heated. Of course 

10. (Jtoj 8i cUpa jjv<rrdvTa} Air in its it is Kara rd SidKeva that air yields to the 
highest condensation can only be resolved influence of fire alone; for it may be 
Kara rd, rplywva, that is by transmuta- resolved Kara rd rplyuva by either fire or 
tion into another element. Stallbaum, water, on the principles laid down in 
not understanding this sentence, desires 56 E. 

to corrupt it by altering irXrjv to ird\ii>. 12. TdSiS-ijTwv |ju|ip,CKTa>v] Now we 

But the text is perfectly sound and has come to the reason why substances com- 

been rightly explained by Martin. Con- pounded by earth and water are fused by 

densed air means cloud : and cloud is fire alone. So long as the interspaces 

ordinarily dissolved into a shower of between the earthy particles are occupied 

rain; or, in the case of a thundercloud, by the particles of water belonging to the 

lightning issues from it. Plato therefore, rforewtj, the particles of water external 

holding as he does that the cloud is a form to it, supposing the body to be plunged 

of air, conceives it to be resolved /card in water, can find no entrance ; conse- 

ra rplyuva, in the one case into water, quently they can produce no effect upon 

in the other into fire. The agent which it. But the particles of fire, finding their 

produces the metamorphosis is not speci- way in, force themselves between the 

fied in this instance. particles of water and disturb them : and 

11. dptaoTOv 8i KaTanfKti] In its these in their turn, being thrust against 
normal state air is subject to the influence the particles of earth, dislocate the latter, 
of fire alone, which dilates it by insinu- and so the structure of the whole mass is 
ating its own particles between those of broken up and fused. 



[6 1 B 

*v ' 
els rd r<v v&drcov Bidiceva elffiovra, cnrep v8a)p yrjv, rovro 

a7Tpya^6fjLva, rrj^Oevri ru> fcoiv<p aobpan pelv fjiova atria 
f3e/3ijKe. rvyxdvei Be ravra ovra, rd fj,ev e\arrov e-^ovra v 
rj yrjs TO re Trepl rr/v va\ov <yevo$ arrav cxra re \i6wv %yrd 
5 icakelrai, rd Se ir\eov vSaros av Trdvra oaa KrjpoeiBrj Kal Ov/juanicd C 

XXVI. Kat ra pev Brj cr^fiaa-i teoivwviais re Kal fiera\\a- 
7<x?9 et? d\\rj\a 7r7roiKi\/j,eva eiSr) cr^eSoy cTriSeSeiKrai' rd Se 
iraO^ara avrwv St' a? atr/a? yeyove Treipareov e^avL^eiv. irpwrov 

N , f/ tf/1 5.^ / / ^S>\\ 

fjbev ovv vTrap%eiv aicruri(n,v oei roi<> heyofAevois aet* (rapicos be icai 
rwv irepl crdpica yevecriv, ^vxrjf re ocrov Ovrjrov, OVITW Bie\rj\,v- 

i post TOVTO delevi trvp atpa, quae dant codices omnes et HSZ. TOVTO 84 S. 
7 ffxtfuafft. : <rx'h( JI - aTa HSZ. 8 etdij : ijSr) A. 

by the two intruding elements, irvp atpa : 
its insertion would be a gain to the sense. 

4. Xt0wv x vr< ^ t^S'nl For example the 
/j.{\av xP^a ?x w " Woj mentioned above, 
which we saw to have an admixture of 
water in its composition. 

6 1 c 64 A, c. xxvi. In order to set 
forth thoroughly the properties of matter, 
we ought to explain the nature of their 
action upon our bodies and the nature of 
the bodies that are so affected. As both 
these subjects cannot be dealt with at 
once, let us first examine the sensible 
qualities of things. The sensation of 
heat is due to the penetrating power of 
fire, which enters and divides the flesh : 
cold is a contraction of the flesh under 
the influence of moisture. Hardness 
and softness depend on the form of the 
constituent corpuscule, the cube being 
most stable and therefore most resisting. 
Concerning heavy and light, it is neces- 
sary to clear away some popular mis- 
conceptions. It is common to speak as 
if the universe were divided into two 
regions, upper and lower, to the latter 
of which all heavy bodies naturally tend. 
But the truth is that, the universe being 
a sphere, there is no such thing as an 
upper and a lower region in it. For if 
one were to travel round the universe he 

I . oiTfp v8 wp yij v, TOVTO ciirep Ya6 fi va ] 
The words irvp dtpa, which in the mss. 
follow TOUTO, I have rejected for more 
than one reason; the chief of which is 
that they are absolute nonsense. We 
have seen above that water acts upon 
earth by thrusting its particles between 
those of earth and forcing them asunder : 
likewise we have just seen that fire acts 
upon water by thrusting its particles be- 
tween those of water and forcing them 
asunder. Therefore, as Plato says, fire has 
precisely the same action upon water that 
water has upon earth. But what con- 
ceivable sense is there in introducing 
air? Air neither is any constituent of 
the compound nor plays any part in its 
fusion : it is altogether beside the ques- 
tion. A minor, though still substantial, 
reason for rejecting the words is the 
grammar. If we retain irvp atpa, not 
only is irvp out of all construction, but 
direpya^fj.eva is left forlorn of any sub- 
stantive wherewith to agree. On the 
other hand the rejection of those two 
words, which I conceive to have been 
inserted by a copyist in an over antitheti- 
cal frame of mind, restores both sense 
and grammar. I suspect however that 
Plato's original words were ro00' i!3w/> 
and that fiSup was expelled 




bulk undissolved; but those of fire enter into the interstices of the 
water, and acting upon it as water does upon earth, can alone 
cause the combined mass to melt and become liquid. In this 
class those which have less water than earth are all kinds of glass 
and all stones that are called fusible; and those which contain 
more water include all formations like wax and frankincense. 

XXVI. Now all the manifold forms that arise from diverse 
shapes and combinations and changes from one to another have 
been pretty fully set forth; next we must try to explain their 
affections and the causes that lead to them. First we must 
assign to all the substances we have described the property of 
causing sensation. But the origin of flesh and all that belongs 
to it and of the mortal part of soul we have not yet discussed. 

would be forced to call the same point 
successively above and below: since it 
would at one time be overhead, at another 
beneath him. The true explanation of 
gravity and attraction is as follows. Ow- 
ing to the vibration of the universe, every 
element has its proper region in space ; 
and every portion of any element which 
is in an alien sphere endeavours to escape 
to its own sphere. For this reason, if 
we raise portions of earth into the region 
of air, they tend to make their way back 
to earth again, and the larger portion 
strives more forcibly so to return than 
the smaller. Hence we say that earth is 
'heavy' and tends 'downward'; while 
fire, because it seeks to fly away from 
earth to its own home, we say is 'light ' 
and tends ' upward '. But could we reach 
the home of fire and raise portions of it 
into the air, we should find this condition 
reversed: fire would be 'heavy' and tend 
'downwards' to its own home, and earth 
would be 'light' and tend 'upwards' to 
the home of earth. And so the gravi- 
tation of all bodies depends altogether 
upon their position in space relatively to 
their proper region; and the 'weight' of 
any body is simply the attraction which 
draws it towards its own home. Such is 
the nature of light and heavy : roughness 
is due to hardness and irregularity in the 

P. T. 

substance, smoothness to regularity and 

7. teal TO, (i.iv 8i] crxtjuewri] Having 
explained the structure of the various 
forms in which the four etdrj appear and 
their combinations, our next task is to 
set forth the causes of the sensations 
they produce in us. For yyii\ the 
editors from Stallbaum onwards, with 
the exception of Martin, read o-x^ara 
sub silentio. This reading is not men- 
tioned by Bekker, and no ms. testimony 
is by any one cited for it. It is by no 
means an improvement ; and since I can 
find neither its origin nor its authority I 
have suffered it fp-/ifj.t]v 6<f>\eiv and revert- 
ed to the old reading. Ficinus translates 
' eas species, quae figuris commutationi- 
busque invicem variantur.' 

8. rd 8i 71-0.07] P.O.TCL ] The word 
TrdOrjua is here used in a rather peculiar 
manner. Elsewhere it denotes the im- 
pression sustained by the percipient sub- 
ject from the external agent see 64 B, c. 
But here vddrjfia signifies a quality per- 
taining to the object which produces this 
impression on the subject. We have a 
similar unusual significance in inrapxttv 
al<r6t)ffiv below; where afo6-ri<ri,s denotes 
the property of exciting sensation. 

1 1. |VXTJS TC oo-ov OVTJTOV] See 69 D, 
where the term is explained. 




[6 1 c 

Oafiev. Tvy%fivei Be ovre ravra %wpi9 TO/I/ 7Tpl ra TraOrj/Aara ocra 
alffOrjra OVT e/ceiva avev rovrwv Sward ifcavws \e%0T)vai, TO Be D 
ap,a o-%eBov ov BvvaToV VTTodeTeov Br) irpoTepov Odrepa, rd 8" 
VTCoreBevra errdvi^ev avOiS. iva ovv e^? rd TraOrjaara \eyrjrai 
5 rot? yeveo-iv, earw rrporepa r^uv rd Trepl a-tapa KOI ^rv^rjv ovra. 
irp&rov fjiev ovv f) Trvp Qep/Jiov \eyofj,v, tBat^ev c58e (TKorrovvre<; t rrjv 
Sid/cpiaiv Kal ro/j,r/v avrov Trepl TO crcG/ia rj/jiwv ryiyvofjievrjv evvoij- 
Bevres. ori jj,ev yap ov n TO TrdOos, iravres a^eSov alo-davofieOa' E 
rrjv Be XeTTTor^ra rwv rc\evpwv Kal ywvioSv o^vTijTa r&v re fiopiwv 

10 (TjAiKporiiTa /cal rrj<s (fropds TO ra^o9, ot? 7rdo~i atyoSpov ov Kal 
o^ea>? TO 7rpoo~rv%ov del Tefj,vei, \oyio~reov dvafjUfivrjaKO- 
rrjv rov cr^/iaTO? avrov yeveaiv, on /jbdXio-ra eKCivrj Kal 62 A 
OVK d\\tj Averts SiaKplvovo~a rj/jitov Kara o-jAiKpd re Ta croo/jiaTa 
Keppuari^ovaa rovro o vvv Oep/jiov \e<yo(J,ev etoTW9 TO rrdO^^a Kal 

15 Tovvofj,a Trapeo~xe- TO 8' evavriov rovrwv Kard8r)\ov fj-ev, o/iw? 8e 
fjitjo'ev eTrtSees CCTTOJ \6yov. Ta ydp Brj rwv Trepl TO o~(a/j,a vypwv 
ueya\o/j,epe<TTpa elcnovra, rd crp,iKp6repa e^wdovvTa, et? Ta? eKei- 
vojv ov Bvvdfj,eva eSpa? evSvvai, ^vvcodovvTa yftoSv TO vorepov e^ B 

2 al<r0Tf)Td : alffdrjTtKii. AHSZ. 4 Carepa. ante {nroreOtvTa dat S. 


i. OVT ravra. X w P's] To explain 
the action of external objects upon the 
human body involves a description of the 
structure of the said body. But as two 
subjects cannot be expounded at once, 
we must assume (uwoOertov) one, and 
afterwards examine what we have as- 

8<ra al<r0T]Ta] I have taken upon me 
to make this correction of the ms. euV- 
6r)TiK3., which appears to me unmeaning. 
The two subjects to be handled are (i) 
the structure of flesh &c, how it is capable 
of receiving impressions, (2) the proper- 
ties of objects, how they are capable of 
producing impressions. But this latter 
is expressed by alffO-qra, not ahOrfTiKa. : 
how can the objects in this relation be 
termed sentient? The corruption has 
arisen, I doubt not, from failure to ap- 
prehend the peculiar significance of xra- 
07?/idTa. A similar confusion is found in 
58 D, KIVIJTIKOV for Kivrirbv. 

5. &TTW irpoTspa ii|uv] That is to 
say, let us first assume their nature and 
construction; not let us first examine 
them. Plato, for the sake of continuity 
in his exposition, takes the jra^/xara 
first, postponing the account of ffapKos 

6. T irip 6p(J.6v] So then Oep^bv is 
the vaOrj/jLa of irup : we have to inquire 
how fire acts, so as to possess this jra- 

TT^V SiaKpuriv] Aristotle demurs to 
this explanation : see de gen. et corr. 
II ii 329 b 26 6ep/j.t>v ydp ftm rd ffvynplvov 
r& opoyevri (rb yap diaKpiveiv, oirep tftaffl 
iroieif TO irvp, ffvyKplvetv Iffrl ra d/td</>u\a' 
(rvfj-ftaiyei ydp l^aipelv TO. d\\6rpia) t \J/v- 
Xpov d TO crvvdyov Kal avynplvov o/jioLus Ta 
re ffvyyevrj Kal Ta /J.T] 6/M<j>v\a. Theo- 
phrastos also complains that Plato does 
not explain heat and cold on the same 
principle: de sensu 87 O.TOTTOV 5 Kal 
TOVTOV irp&Tov fj.iv TO fj,rj irdvTa 6fJ.oius 

62 B] TIMAIOS. 227 

Now this cannot be adequately dealt with apart from the 
affections of sense, nor yet can the latter without the former ; 
yet to treat them both at once is hardly possible. We must 
assume one side then, and afterwards we will return to examine 
what we assumed. In order then that the properties of the 
several elements may be discussed in due order, let us first as- 
sume the nature of body and soul. First then let us see what 
we mean by calling fire hot ; which we must consider in the 
following way, remembering the power of dividing and cutting 
which fire exercises upon our body. That the sensation is a 
sharp one we are all well enough aware : and the fineness of 
the edges and sharpness of the angles, besides the smallness 
of its particles and the swiftness of its motion, all of which 
qualities combine to render it so vehement and piercing as 
keenly to cut whatever meets it all this we must take into 
account, remembering the nature of its figure, that this more 
than any other kind penetrates our body and minutely divides 
it, whence the sensation that we now call heat justly derives 
its quality and its name. The opposite condition, though 
obvious enough, still must not lack an explanation. When 
the larger particles of moisture which surround the body enter 
into it, they displace the smaller, and because they are not 
able to pass into their places, they compress the moisture within 

awooovvai, fiySt oaa TOV afirov ytvovf the word was originally /cep/uoV, 'cutting'. 

6/uVas yap TO Gepfjiw ffxnf-a-Ti TO \f/vxpov irdOr]p,a is again used as in 6 1 C. 

ov% <i)ffavTus dWowKep. But it seems to 16. TWV irepl TO (r<o|ia vypwv] Water 

me that the action of moisture in pro- then is for Plato the preeminently cold 

ducing cold does, in Plato's account, de- element : this view was shared by Aris- 

pend on the form of the particles. It totle; see meteorologica IV xi 389 b 15. 

must at any rate be allowed that Plato's Chrysippos said air: Plutarch in his trea- 

explanation has over Aristotle's, as pro- tise de prlmo frigido argues fantastically 

pounded in the passage above cited, the in favour of earth. Plato's theory of cold 

advantage of clearness and simplicity. is this. The larger particles of moisture 

ii. XOYWTT^OV ava(xt(iv^<TKO|x^vois] surrounding the body displace the small- 

i.e. if we call to mind the form of its er moist particles in the body, but 

constituent particles, we cannot fail to owing to their size cannot occupy the 

see that fire must necessarily have a place of the latter. Hence by the xepta- 

highly penetrating power. <rts the substance of the body is com- 

14. 8 vvv 0pp.6v Xyo|Av] As is clearly pressed to fill up the vacant spaces. This, 

indicated by vvv, an etymology is in- in its extremes! form, is freezing; and 

tended ; and the cnly possible reference the mutual repulsion of the corporeal 

is to KtpnaTi^ovffa. Plato would say that particles thus forced into unnatural con- 




[62 B 

dv(afjLa\ov KeKivrjfjLevov re aKivr]Tov Bt oynaXoTr/ra Kal TTJV %vvwcriv 
direpya^ofieva irr^yvvcn. TO Be irapd cpvcriv ^vvayoaevov 
Kara <f>vcriv avTo eavTO et9 TovvavTiov dirwOovv. TTJ Brj 
Kal ro5 creicrfAU) TQVTW Tp6fj,o<f Kal piyos eredrj, ^v^pov re TO irdOos 

5 airav TOVTO Kal TO Bpwv avTo O"X,ev ovofia. arK\r/pov Be, oo-oi? av 
r/fjbwv rj crdp% vireiKT)' ua\aKov Be, ocra av Trj crapKi' irpos d\\r)\d 
T ovTft)?. vireiKei Be ocrov eirl crpuKpov ftaivei' TO Be e/c TTpaya>- 
vwv ov fidcrewv, are /3e/S?7/co? cr<f)6Bpa, dvTiTvirwTaTOv elBos, o TI Te C 
av 4? irvKVOTvjra ^vviov irXeicrTyv CLVTITOVOV y /j,d\icrTa. ftapv Be 

10 Kal Kovcpov fj,Ta T//9 TOI) KaTw <pv<rea)<; dvw re \eyo/j,evr)s eeTa%6- 
fj.evov av Br)\(odeirj cracpecrTaTa. cfrvcrei yap Bij Tivas T07TOU9 Bvo 
elvat Biei\r)<poTa<i Bi^f] TO irdv evavTiovs, TOV ftev KO.TW, irpos ov 
irdvO" ocra Tivd oyKov crwuaTos %ei, TOV 8' dvca, irpos ov 
v 3^Ta4 irdv, OVK opOov ovBauf) vo/Mi^eiv' TOV yap 

J Te: ye A. 10 ToO ante K&TU omittunt SZ. 

tiguity is trembling and shivering. Cf. 
Philebus 32 A. 

2. |*a'xrat Kard <}>v<rtv] Plutarch 
gives a somewhat different account of 
shivering : de primo frigido vi v<f> wv OVK 
ael <pfvyei ical diroXei-jrei TO 6epfMi>, aXXa 

Kal fw.-xf.raL, rrj fj-axjl 5' avruir ovo/j.a <f>piKi) 
Kal rpo/ios. 

4. TO ird0os...Kal TO Spa>v] i.e. we 
apply the term cold both to ice and to 
the sensation it produces in us. 

6. Trpos d\\T]\d re OVTWS] i.e. the 
terms hard and soft are applied to them 
in relation to each other, as well as in 
relation to our flesh : thus lead, which 
yields to iron, is soft in relation to iron, 
though hard in relation to our flesh. 
Theophrastos takes exception to this 
definition also: de sensu 87 tirel 8 
fjLa\aKW TO vireiKov, tpavepov on TO vdup 
Kal 6 drip Kal TO trvp /juiXaKa' <f>ri<rl yap 
viretKeiv TO ftiKpav %x uv fidffiv, uffre TO 
irvp av etr) juaXaKwroTOV. doKft 5^ TOU- 
rwv ovOtv ovd' 8\us TO fj.->) [itvov aXXa 
fj-eOurrd/j-evov tlvai /j.a\aKov, d\\d TO els 
TO fidOos virfiKov avcv neTaffTdffeus. Here- 
in he follows Aristotle meteorologica IV iv 
38 2 a 12 /naXaKW de TO virfiKov Tcp ^177 O.VTI- 

irepiiffTacrOat,' TO yap vdup ov /jLa 
yap inretKei Trj 6\l\f/ei TO tiriireSov cis fil6os 
aXX' dvTiTrepiiffTaTat. This is of course 
merely a question of names. 

9. f3apv 8 Kal KOV<{X>V] Here we 
have Plato's theory of attraction and 
gravitation, which is unquestionably by 
far the most lucid and scientific that has 
been propounded by any ancient au- 
thority. The popular notion was that 
the portion of the universe which we 
occupy is AcaTw, and that above our heads 
dvu : ftapv is that which has a tendency 
to move KO.TU, Kov<f>ov that which has a 
tendency to move avu, or at least a 
slighter tendency KOLTU. Plato clearly 
saw the unscientific nature of this con- 
ception. The explanation he offered in 
its place was this. We have seen that 
the vibration of the viroSoxy tends to sift 
the four elements into separate regions in 
space; but owing to the TT/XTJO-IJ portions 
of them are found scattered all over the 
universe. A mass of any element which 
finds itself in an alien sphere endeavours 
with all its might to escape to its proper 
region : and it is just this endeavour which 
constitutes its gravity: attraction is the 
effort of all matter to obey the sifting 

C] TIMAI02. 229 

us ; and whereas it was irregular and mobile, they render it 
immovable owing to uniformity and contraction, and so it 
becomes rigid. And what is against nature contracted in 
obedience to nature struggles and thrusts itself apart ; and to 
this struggling and quaking has been given the name of 
trembling and shivering : and both the effect and the cause 
of it are in all cases termed ' cold '. 

' Hard ' is the name given to all things to which our flesh 
yields ; and ' soft ' to those which yield to the flesh ; and so also 
they are termed in their relation to each other. Those which 
yield are such as have a small base of support; and the figure 
with square surfaces, as it is most firmly based, is the most 
stubborn form ; so too is whatever from the intensity of its com- 
pression offers the strongest resistance. 

Of 'heavy' and 'light' we shall find the clearest explanation 
if we examine them together with the so-called 'below' and 
' above'. That there are naturally two opposite regions, dividing 
the universe between them, one the lower, to which sink all 
things that have material bulk, the other upper, to which every- 
thing rises against its will, is altogether a false opinion. For 

force which is in nature. So when we of flame has a stronger upward tendency 

raise any substance of an earthy nature, than a smaller as an objection to Plato's 

the earthward impulse which we observe theory ; whereas it is precisely what 

in it is not due to the fact that the earth Plato affirms must on his principles in- 

is the downward region whither all heavy evitably be the case. Aristotle's own 

bodies tend to fall, but to this sifting force doctrine differed but little from the vulgar 

which causes the mass of earth to strive notion on the subject : see physica IV v 

towards its own sphere. 2 1 2 a 24 woV eVel TO KOV^OV TO ai><a 

Aristotle in his criticism of Plato's <f>fp&/j.(i>6i> ean (pi'fffi, TO 5e fiapb TO Kara, 

theory (de caelo IV ii 308* 34 foil.) sim- TO i^v irpos TO ptaov irepi^ov irtpas KO.TW 

ply ignores the whole point of it from eVri, Kal auro TO fdffov, TO 52 irpos TO 

beginning to end. The extent to which ec/xaroc avu, Kal aiVo TO <rx aro ''- Theo- 

he has done so may be gathered from the phrastos in his statement of the Platonic 

following citation: afore ON 6V 6\iyt>Tr)Ta theory (tie senstt 88) shows a clearer 

Tuf Tptydvwv e' uv ffvveo-Tavai <j>aaiv comprehension of it, though marred by a 

tKaffTov avruv, TO vvp 5.vd) <ptpf(F0ai wtyu- hankering after a dirXtDs flapv nal Kov<pov. 

Kff TO Tf yap ir\etoi> ffTTov av t<ptpTo Anaxagoras divided space into &vu and 

Kal fiapvTfpov ai> -ffv eV irXeiovwv ot> Tpiyu- KO.TU : see Diogenes Laertius II 8: but 

v(av. vvv bt QalvfTai rovvavrlov' ocrtf yap Aristotle says neither he nor Empedokles 

dv rj TrXetoc, KovtpoTepov fffTi Kal avu <ptpt- gave any definition of j3a/n) and K.ovtj>ov. 

Tat OO.TTOV. That is to say, Aristotle de caclo IV ii 309" 20. 
actually urges the fact that a larger body 



[62 c 

ovpavov o-<f>aipoeiBovs oro9, o<ra uev <j>eo~rra icrov rov fieo~ov D 
yeyovev ea^ara, o/W9 avrd ^pr] ea-^ara rrefyvKevai, TO Be ftecrov 
TO, avrd perpa rwv eo-%dra)v dfaa-TrjKos ev ro> KaravriKpv voai^eiv 
Bel rrdvrwv elvai. rov Brj KoajAov ravrrj rrefyvKoros rl rwv elprjue- 

5 va)v dva) Tt9 17 Karco ndeuevos OVK ev BiKrj So^ei TO fJLrjBev 
ovoua \eyeiv ; 6 p,ev yap /iecro9 ev avrw TOTTO? ovre Kara) 
ovre ava) \ejecrOac SiKatos, aXX' avro ev fjiecra)' 6 8e irepi^ ovre 
/i<705 ovr ex wv ^^d^opov avrov ftepos erepov Oarepov fj,d\\ov 
TO fjbeo~ov 77 n TWV KaravriKpv. rov Be oyuo/w? irdvrr) rrefyvKoros rrold 

10 Ti9 Tri(f)epa)v cvofjiara avry evavrla KOI rrrj Ka\(a<; av 77704x0 \eyeiv, 
el yap ri Kal arepeov eirj Kara fiecrov rov TTCW/TO? to-OTraXe?, et? 
ov8ev av rrore rwv ecr^arwi/ eve^deir} Bid rrjv rravrrj ofjLoiorijra G3 A 
avr&v a\V el Kal irepl avro rropevoirb rt? ev KVK\O), TroXXa/ct? av 
crra? ai/T/Troi/9 ravrbv avrov Kara) Kal dvw rrpocreirroL. TO yaev yup 

15 oXov, Kaddrcep elprjrai, vvv S>j, a<f)aipoei,Se<; 6v, rorrov nvd Kara), 
rbv Be dva) \eyeiv e^eiv OVK e/j,<f>povo<f odev Be (avoad(70r} ravra 
Kal ev ot9 ovra eldicraeOa Bi eKelva Kal rbv ovpavov o\ov ovra) 
Biatporfievot, \eyeiv, ravra Btouo\oyr)reov vrrodep,evoL<; TaSe r^ilv. B 
t Tt9 ev TW TOV rravrbs TOTTO), Kaff ov r) rov Trvpbs el'X^e ud\i<rra 

10 (f)vcri<>, ov Kal 7r\el<rrov av tf 

10 ai> omittit A. 

3. v TiS Ka.Tavn.Kpv] The universe 
being a sphere, every point on the cir- 
cumference (^xara) has precisely the 
same relation as every other to the centre, 
which is right opposite to each. There 
is therefore nothing whereby one portion 
of the circumference can be differentiated 
from another so as to justify us in term- 
ing one avw and the other KO.TU. Nor 
yet will Plato allow the correctness of 
terming the centre KO.TW, as Aristotle 
subsequently did, nor dvw either: it is 
just 'the centre' O.VTO ev /jitfftp. How- 
ever in Phaedo 1 1 2 E the centre of the 
earth is regarded as the lowest point : but 
in that passage physics are largely tern- 
pered with mythology. 

8. (xdXXov irp6s TO plo-ov] That is, 
no part of the circumference has any 
difference in its relations towards the 
centre, as compared with any part on the 

etrj irpbs o <j)epeTat, eVe/i/3a9 


opposite side. 

u. cl yap rt Kal (TTpt6v ttr\] If 
there were a solid body at the centre 
of the universe (such as the earth in the 
Platonic cosmology actually was), such 
is the uniformity of the sphere in which 
it is, that it would have no tendency 
towards any one point in the circum- 
ference rather than any other : therefore 
for it there would be no &vu nor KO.TU in 
any direction. Compare Phaedo 109 A 
Iffbppoirov yap TrpayfJ-a 6/j.oiov nvos ev /jL^ffy 
Tt6tv ovx f fj.a\\ov ovd' tyrrov ovSa- 
p6<re K\i6ijvai, 6/xoiwj 8' tx ov &K\IV^ 

13. cl Kal ircpl avTo iropevoircS TIS] 
A second illustration of the want of signi- 
ficance in the terms avu and KO.TW is this. 
If one were to travel round the circum- 
ference, he would be forced, if he used 
the words in the popular w.ay, to call 

63 B] TIMAIOl 231 

since the form of the universe is spherical, all the extreme points, 
being equally distant from the centre, are by their very nature 
equally extreme ; and the centre, being equally distant from 
all the extremes, ought to be regarded as opposite to all such 
points. This being the nature of the universe, how can one 
describe any of the said points as upper or lower, without justly 
being censured for using irrelevant terms ? For the centre 
cannot properly be described as being above or below, but 
simply at the centre ; while the circumference is neither itself 
central nor has any difference between the points on its sur- 
face, so that one has a different relation to the centre from 
an opposite point. Since then it is everywhere uniform, how 
and in what sense can we suppose we are speaking correctly 
if we use terms which imply opposition ? For suppose in the 
midst of the universe there were a solid body in equilibrium, 
it would have no tendency towards any point in the circum- 
ference, owing to the absolute uniformity of the whole : indeed 
if we were to walk round the sphere, frequently, as we stood 
at the antipodes of our former position, we should call the 
same point on its surface successively 'above' and 'below'. For 
this universe being spherical, as we just now said, no rational 
man can speak of one region as upper, of another as lower: how- 
ever whence these names were derived and under what conditions 
we use them to express this division of the entire universe, 
we may explain on the following hypothesis. In that region 
of the universe which is specially allotted to the element of 
fire, where indeed the greatest mass would be collected of that 
to which it is attracted, if one should attain to this place, and, 

the same point both dvu and /carw: for supply an object with (t\nx f > ' m which 

the point that now is KO.TU will be avta fire has its allotted place.' Compare 

when he reaches the antipodes thereof. Aeschylus Seven against Thebes 423 Ka- 

I think we must conceive the traveller iravtiis 5' ^ir' 'H\tKTpa.i<ru> (IXyxtv Ti/Xeuj. 

to be moving round the inside of the See too 41 c above. 

circumference of the universe; not, as 20. irXeio-rov av rjOpowrjUvov clij] Al- 

Stallbaum supposes, round the arrpfov. though detached portions of fire are to 

For were he walking round the latter, be found in all parts of the universe, yet, 

every point in it would always be KO.TU in since all fire is perpetually struggling to 

the vulgar sense. reach its proper home, naturally the great 

19. Ka8' ov] Stallbaum would ex- bulk of the element will be accumulated 

punge <fa0'. But I think we may readily in that region. 

232 TIAATHNOS [63 B 

67T* KeivO Kal BvvafJilV 649 TOVTO e%(i)V, f^epr) TOV TTVpb? u<f)aipd}V 

io'Taiv), ridels els TrXucrTiyyas, cupwv TOV ^vyw teal TO Trvp e\Kwv 
ei9 drofiotov depa j3ia6fji,vos, Bfj\ov 009 rov\arTov TTOV TOV //,e/bi/o9 
paov ftiaTcti' poopr) yap /ua Bvoiv a/xa fieTeojpi^ofjievoiv TO p.ev C 
5 eXaTTOv fj,d\\ov, TO Be 7r\eov JJTTOV dvdytcr) TTOV tcaTaTeivojjievov 
^vverrecrdai TTJ ftia, KOI TO (tev 7ro\v ftapv teal KOTTW <f>epo[j,evov 
K\t}0rjvai,, TO Be o-piKpov e\a(j>pbv teal dvw. TUVTOV ST) TOVTO Bel 
i, SpwvTas r;/ia? Trepl TOvBe TOV TOTTOV. Trl jap yrjs /9e- 
, yeoaBr) jevrj Buo-Tapevoi, teal yfjv eVtore avTrjv e\KOfJ.ev et? 

10 dvopoiov depa ftlq ical Trapa (frvo-iv, afji^oTepa TOV %vy<yevov<; dvTe- 
Xopeva. TO Be crfMicpOTepov paov TOV /ietbi/o<? j3iao/J,evoi<i 6/9 TO D 
dvofjioiov TrpOTepov ^vve-TreTai- tcov<j>ov ovv avTO -Trpoaeipijica/jiev teal 
TOV TOTTOV et9 ov ftia^ofieO' avw, TO B' evavTiov TOVTOIS 7ra'#o9 fiapv 
teal tcaTco. raOr' ovv Brj BiatyopaJS e%eiv avTa 7rpc9 avTa dvdyicr) 

15 Bid TO TO, TrXrldv) TU>V yvv TOTTOV evavTiov d\\a d\\ois tcaTe^etv 
TO yap ev ere/aw tcov(f)ov ov TOTTW r3 /cara TOV evavTiov TOTTOV 
e\a(f>pq) teal TW ftapel TO fiapv T3 re KCLTW TO tcaTto Kal r&5 dvo) TO 
dvo) TcdvT evavTia teal 7T\dyia Kal Tcavrws Bidtyopa Trpbs d\\r)\a E 
dvevpeBrjveTai yiyvopeva teal ovTa- ToBe ye fj,rjv ev TI BiavorjTeov 

20 Trepl 7rdvT(ov dvTwv, &J9 rj p,ev 7rpo9 TO vyyeve$ 6809 e/cdcrrot9 orcra 

i. irvpos d^aipwv icrTaftj] Our mis- efforts precisely as earth and water do 

conception about the nature of light and now: it would have a similar tendency to 

heavy is due to this cause. We are con- revert to its proper region, and would 

fined to this region of earth and water; be 'heavy'; while earth or water, so far 

and when we weigh masses of earth or from resisting the effort to remove it 

water, we find that they always have a from the region of fire, would have a 

tendency in one direction. This tend- natural impulse to fly off in the direction 

ency we call weight, and the direction in of earth, and would be 'light'. Accord- 

which they tend we call downward ; and ingly, whereas now we call the region 

because earth and water resist our efforts of earth 'down', and things that tend 

to remove them from their own region, towards it 'heavy', we should, in the 

we conceive of them as absolutely heavy. supposed case, call the region of fire 

Fire, on the other hand, so far from ' down ' and things that tend towards fire 

resisting any effort to lift it from the 'heavy'. There is therefore no such thing 

region which earth and water seek, has a as absolute lightness and heaviness; all 

natural impulse to fly from it ; whence we things are light or heavy only relatively 

conceive of fire as absolutely light. But to the region in which they are situate. 

this opinion is due to the limitation of 4. PWLTCU is middle, as in Aeschylus 

our experience to one sphere. Could we Agamemnon 385 /3iarot 5' a rdXaiva 

reach the home of fire and endeavour to irtidJ). 

raise portions of it into the region of air, 5. I|TTOV is of course to be joined 

as we now do with earth and water, we with fiWireotfcu. 

should then find that fire resisted our 7. TOVT^V 8rj TOVTO 8ti <j>pao-cu] 

E] TIMAIOS. 233 

acquiring the needful power, should separate portions of fire 
and weigh them in scales, when he raises the balance and 
forcibly drags the fire into the alien air, evidently he overpowers 
the smaller portion more easily than the larger : for when two 
masses are raised at once by the same force, necessarily the 
smaller yields more readily to the force, the larger, owing to 
its resistance, less readily : hence the larger mass is said to be 
heavy and to tend downwards, the smaller to be light and 
to tend upwards. This is exactly what we ought to detect 
ourselves doing in our own region. Moving as we do on the 
earth, we separate portions of earthy substances or sometimes 
earth itself, and drag them into the alien air with unnatural 
force, for each portion clings to its own kind. Now the smaller 
mass yields more readily to our force than the larger and follows 
quicker into the alien element ; therefore we call it ' light ', and 
the place into which we force it ' above ' ; while to the opposite 
conditions we apply the terms 'heavy' and 'below'. Now 
that these mutual relations should vary is inevitable, because 
the bulk of the several elements occupy contrary positions in 
space. For as between a body that is light in one region and 
a body that is light in the opposite region, or as between two 
that are heavy, as well as upper and lower, all the lines of 
attraction will be found to become and remain relatively con- 
trary and transverse and different in every possible way. But 
with all of them this one principle is to be borne in mind, that 
in every case it is the tendency towards the kindred element 

What escapes our notice is that in lifting a variety of ways. 

earth from earth, we are not lifting it 18. tvavrla. Kal irXaYia] Different sub 

'up', but simply out of its own region. stances which are imprisoned in an alien 

This we should realise if we tried the region will have the lines of their attrac- 

experiment on fire in the fire-home, be- tion in some instances opposite, as in the 

cause we should find our customary case of masses of fire and of earth in the 

notions of up and down inverted. region of air, in others the lines may 

10. ap,<j>6Tcpa] i.e. the earth in each be inclined at any angle (ir\dyia) one 

scale. to another, according to the position 

14. ravT ovv 81^ Sia<j>6p<i>s ^X lv l occupied by the two bodies in relation 

These relations of 'light' and 'heavy' to their proper regions. Plato is insist- 

have no absolute fixity, because, as he ing that the lines of gravitation are not 

goes on to explain, the same thing which parallel. 

is light in one region is heavy in another; 20. r\ p^v irpos TO Ivyytvis 686s] Here 

and consequently the direction of 'up' we have the definite statement in so many 

and 'down' is reversed and altered in words that gravity is just the attraction 



[6 3 E- 

ftapv p,ev TO ^epofievov iroiel, rev Be TOTTOV et9 uv TO TOIOVTOV 
<f>epTat, Kara), TO. Be TOVTOIS %OVTO, 009 eTepws OaTepa. irepl Br) 
TOVTCOV av TWV fraOrj/jidTatv raOra aiTia elpfaffo). \etou 8' av KOI 
rpa^eo9 7ra#/;/zaTO9 aiTiav 7ra9 TTOV tcaTiBoov /rat erepa> BvvaTo? av 

5 eirj Xeyeiv crtcXijpoTijs jap aVw/iaXdr^Tt f^i^Oela-a, TO 8" 0/101X0x779 64 A 

XXVII. M.eyio~Tov Be /cat \OITTOV TWV KOLVWV irepl o\ov TO 
o~<ufj,a Tradrj/jkaTcov TO TWV qBecov ical TWV d\yeivv afoiov ev 0*9 
Bte\t]\vdafji,ev, /cat oo~a Bia TWV TOV crajyuaro? fAoplwv 

10 KeKTr]fj,eva Kai X,i/7ra? ev aurot? T^Soz/a? 8" afia eTrofjievas 

ovv Kara iravTOs alo~6r)Tov /cat uvaia-dtjTov 7ra6rj/J.aTO<> ra? atrta? 
\afjL/3(ivo)/jt,ev, dvafAifjuyo-Ko/Aevot TO r^9 CIKIVIJTOV re /cat Bva/civij- B 
TOV <j>vo~e(i)<? OTI Biei\6fieda ev rot9 7rpco~dV TaiTy yap Brj /iera- 
BiQJKTeov TrdvTa, oaa eTnvoov^ev eXeiv. TO fief <ydp /cara fyvaiv 

15 evtclvrjTOV, OTav ical ^pa^v Trddos et? avTO e/ATTiTTTr], BiaBiBa)o~i 
KVK\W, /jiopia eTepa erepot9 TavTov aTrepja^of^eva, fj-e^pnrep av CTTI 

10 avrois : oi)Totx A. 

of a body towards its proper sphere ; and 
for every substance the direction of its 
proper sphere, wherever that may be, is 
KCITW, and the opposite $.v<a. By Td 5 
TOVTOIS K.T.\. Plato means that while in 
a given region we apply the term papv to 
a substance whose 656s irpbs ri> %iryyfvts 
is towards that region, we apply the 
term KOV<J>OV to a substance whose 65os 
irpos TO vyyevts is towards another. To 
adopt Martin's example, in the region 
of earth stones are heavy and vapour 
light; but in the region of air vapour 
is heavy and stones light. 

5. <TK\T]p6TT]s y'ip] With this clause 
TO ( has of course to be supplied. 

64 A 65 B, c. xxvii. We have now to 
explain the nature and cause of pleasure 
and pain. Sensation is produced in the 
following way. If an impression from 
without lights upon a part of the body 
of which the particles are readily stirred, 
those particles which first received the 
impact transmit the motion to their neigh- 
bours; and so it is handed on until it 
reaches the seat of consciousness; at 
which point sensation is effected. If on 

the contrary the impression is received by 
a part of the body which is hard to stir, 
the motion is not transmitted, and no 
sensation ensues. This being so, the 
explanation of pleasure and pain is as 
follows. When any of the particles that 
constitute our body are suddenly and in 
considerable numbers forced out of their 
normal position, the result is pain ; and 
when they in like manner return to their 
normal position, the result is pleasure. 
If however either process takes place on 
a very small scale or very gradually, it is 
imperceptible. When the corporeal par- 
ticles yield to the external impact with 
extreme readiness, the process is accom- 
panied by vivid perception, but neither 
by pleasure nor by pain. If the distur- 
bance has been slow and gradual, and 
the restoration rapid and sudden, we 
experience pleasure without antecedent 
pain : but if these conditions are reversed, 
we feel pain in the disturbance, but the 
restoration affords no pleasure. 

7. TWV KOIVWV irtpl oXov TO <rw(ia] 
An explanation of pleasure and pain will 
complete our account of the sensations 

64 B] TIMAIOS. 235 

that makes us call the falling body heavy, and the place to 
which it falls, below ; while to the reverse relations we apply 
the opposite names. So much then for the causes of these 
conditions. Of the qualities of smooth and rough any one 
could perceive the cause and explain it to another: the latter 
is produced by a combination of hardness and irregularity, the 
former by a combination of uniformity and density. 

XXVII. We have yet to consider the most important point 
relating to the affections which concern the whole body in com- 
mon ; that is, the cause of pleasure and pain accompanying 
the sensations we have discussed : and also the affections which 
produce sensation by means of the separate bodily organs and 
which involve attendant pains and pleasures. This then is how 
we must conceive the causes in the case of every affection, 
sensible or insensible, recollecting how we defined above the 
source of mobility and immobility : for this is the way we must 
seek the explanation we hope to find. When that which is 
naturally mobile is impressed by even a slight affection, it spreads 
abroad the motion, the particles one upon another producing 
the same effect, until coming to the sentient part it announces 

\vhich are not confined to any special we saw it used in the preceding chapter, 

organs, but affect the body as a whole: 13. 4v rois irp<5<r6v] See 55 B. 

next we shall proceed to discuss the 16. |i6pia rpa Ire'pois] The word 

separate senses. /XO/HCI is usually considered as the ob- 

8. V ols 8itXt]X\50a|Av] i.e. in the ject of 8iadl8u<ri. But this seems to me 
perceptions treated in the preceding strained ; since what the evKivrjrov trans- 
chapter, mits is the trdOos, not its own particles. 

n. dvaur0TJTOv ira0T]|iaTOs] A tra- I should prefer to regard fwpia as placed 

6-rifj.a then, we see, is not always ac- in a kind of apposition, the construction 

companied by a.ta6t)<Ti.*. The distinction being somewhat similar to that in So- 

is this. Every external influence affect- phokles Antigone 259 \6yoi 5' tv dXXi?- 

ing the body is a vdOri/j-a, but, unless Xoicnv tppoffovv Kaxol, <u/\a $Myx.wv <f>v- 

it is transmitted to the seat of conscious- Xcuca: cf. Herodotus 1 1 cxxxiii (quoted by 

ness, it does not produce afoO-riais. Thus Prof. Campbell) Iva. ol Svudeica. rea avrl 

cutting the hair is a ira6ij/j.a, but not an Ijf iriwv yti>r)rat, al vvKres rj^pai voitv- 

atffOrjffts : or, to take another example, fuevcu. Just below the juupta are spoken 

a deaf man has the Tradi]fj.a but not the of as transmitting the 7rd#os, 5ia5i5<Ww 

afaOrjffis of sound ; the air-vibrations are fiopiuv fj.opiots dXXwc dXXoiy. 

conveyed to his ear, but stop short there ravrov airtp'yciijop.tva] i. e . affecting 

without being announced to the brain. them with the same 7r<i0os. The theory 

The word irdOrjua, it will be observed, of sensation here enunciated is also set 

being now applied to the subject, has forth in Philebtis 33 D : see too Rcpub- 

a different significance from that in which lie 584 c at ye Sia rov ffw/taros ^iri TT}*- 

236 TIAATHNOS [64 B 

TO <j>povtfMov e\66vTa e^ayyei\r) TOV Troiijo-avTos Ttjv Bvva/uv TO 
8' evavTiov eBpalov ov icar ovSeva re KVK\OV Ibv Trdo-^et p.bvov, 
a\\o Be ov Kivei TOOV 7r\rj<riov, axrre ov BiaBiBovTwv fjiopiwv fiopiois C 
'd\\a>v d\\ot<{ TO TrpwTov 7rd0o<f ev avTOis dKivrjTOV ei$ TO irav 

5 o>oz> jevofjLevov dvaio~dr)Tov Trapeo-^e TO iraObv. TavTa Be trepi TG 
ocTTa teal Ta? T/9t^a? ecrTl Kal ocr a'XXa yijiva TO irXelcrTov 
ev tffjilv fj,6pia' TO, Be efjiTrpocrdev irepl TO, Trjs o^eco? /cat 
/xaXi<7Ta, Bid TO Trvpbs depo<; T ev CIVTOIS Buvapiv eveivat, 
TO Br) T)79 qBovrjs Kal \i>7rr)<> wBe Set Biavoelcrdai. TO /j,ev Trapd 

10 <f>vcriv teal ftlaiov yvyvo/juevov ddpoov Trap THMV TcdQos d\yeiv6i>, TO D 
8' ei9 (f>vcriv aTCibv -rrdXtv dOpoov ySv, TO Be ripefia Kal KaTa o-fj,iicpbv 
dvaio-QijTov, TO 8' evavTiov TOVTOIS eVavTtw?. TO Be /ne 
yiyvofjievov ajrav alcrOrjTov fj,ev 'o TL /j,d\,i<TTa, \V7rr)<; Be fcal q 
ov fj,T%ov, olov Ta TTepl Tr/v o-^riv avTt}v Tradij/j,aTa, r) Br} o~<ap.a ev 

15 Tots Trpoo-Qev epptjdr} tca0' rjpepav gvp^ves r)p,<av jiyveaffat. Tainrj 
<ydp TOfial fjiev /cal Kavcreis Kal ocra a\Xa Trda-^ei \VTras OVK e/Lt- 
Troiovcriv, ovBe qBovas 7rd\iv ejrl TavTov aTTLOVcrrj^ elBos, /AeyicrTai E 
Be al<T0r)o-ei<; Kal o~a(peo-TaTai KaQoTi T dv TrdOrj Kal 'oawv dv avTij 
Try Trpoo~/3a\ovo~a etyaTTTijTar ftta jdp TO Trd^Trav OVK evt Trj Bia- 

6 TO.S ante rp/xas omittunt SZ. 15 i)/juv S. 19 irpoff^aXoOcra : irpo<rft<i\\ovffa S. 

^vx^v rflvovffai : and compare Aristotle soul which perceives pleasure. As usual, 

tie sensu \ 436 b 6 >) 5' aftrflTjim 6Vt 5id TOV Aristotle's objections miss the point. He 

ffui/jLaros ylverat TTJ ifsvxy 8ij\ov Kal 5td TOV is treating pleasure subjectively and psy- 

\5yov Kai TOV \6yov x^pts. chologically ; whereas Plato's theory is 

6. 6<rra Kal rds rptxis] So says a purely physical one. There is no con- 

Aristotle de anima III xiii 435* 24 /cat 3ia fusion in the hitter's view between the 

TOVTO rois 6<TTois xat rats OpL^l Kal TO?J subjective and objective aspects; but here 

roioi/rois nopioLs OVK atff6ai>6/JL(6a, STL yrjs he is only concerned with explaining the 

tffriv. physical causes which give rise to pleasure 

9. TO jtiv irapd }>v<riv] The first and pain. 

indication of this theory of pleasure and 12. TO 8i JMT' tvirT(as] We have 

pain is to be found in Republic 583 C seen that sensation is due to the cor- 

foll.: it is definitely set forth in Philebus poreal particles being evKlvrfra and trans- 

31 D foil. The Platonic theory is assailed mining the jrdflos to the seat of conscious- 

by Aristotle, 1173*31. He ness. But pleasure and pain require a 

objects (i) that a Klvrjffis involves the certain degree of resistance in the par- 

notion of speed, which pleasure does tides : for if they offer only the slightest 

not; (2) if pleasure is a ytveffi.3, where- possible opposition to the external in- 

unto is it a ytvevu, and out of what con- fluence, the perception is indeed acute, 

stituents does it arise? (3) it cannot be but is entirely unattended by physical 

an diroir\^puffis, for that is a purely cor- pain or pleasure. An instance of this 

poreal process, and it is not body but is furnished by the phenomena of sight. 

E] TIMAIOS. 237 

the property of the agent : but a substance that is immobile 
is too stable to spread the motion round about, and thus merely 
receives the affection but does not stir any neighbouring part; 
so that as the particles do not pass on one to another the 
original impulse which affected them, they keep it untransmitted 
to the entire creature and thus leave the recipient of the af- 
fection without sensation. This takes place with our bones and 
hair and all the parts we have which are formed mostly of 
earth : while the former conditions apply in the highest degree 
to sight and hearing, because they contain the greatest pro- 
portion of fire and air. The nature of pleasure and pain must 
be conceived thus : an affection contrary to nature, when it takes 
place forcibly and suddenly within us, is painful ; a sudden 
return to the natural state is pleasant; a gentle and gradual 
process is imperceptible; and one of an opposite character is per- 
ceptible. Now a process which takes place with perfect facility 
is perceptible in a high degree, but is accompanied neither by 
pleasure nor by pain. An example will be found in the affec- 
tions of the visual current, which we said above was in the day- 
time a material body cognate with ourselves. In this cutting and 
burning and any other affection cause no, pain; nor does pleasure 
ensue when it returns to its normal state : but its perceptions 
are most vivid and accurate of whatsoever impresses it or what- 
soever itself meets and touches. For its dilation and contraction 

The oi/'ews pev/j.a (which we must remem- 14. kv TOIS irpocrfltv] 45 B. By TTJV 

ber to be actually part of ourselves) is 6\f/iv we are as before to understand the 

composed of extremely subtle and mobile 6\f/eus f>evfj.a. 

particles, which yield without resistance 15. |v|juf>vs i]pu3v] Stallbaum is per- 
to any external impulse. This may come haps right in reading TJ/MI>. But as try- 
in contact with fire or be divided by a yevrjs is several times followed by the 
sharp instrument, and yet, while the KO.V- genitive (see 30 D) it seems possible that 
o-tj and the TO^T) are clearly perceived, t-v/jupvrjs might have the same construction, 
no pain is felt, notwithstanding that in V/J.<J>VTOS seems to have the same go- 
either case the particles are very much vernment in Philebus 51 D xai rovruv 
dislocated. Plato is of course speaking v/i0t5roiis riSovas eirontvas. 
merely of bodily pain and pleasure, not 18. ical o<rwv dv] A similar fulness 
of the mental pleasure awakened by the of detail is in 45 C STOV T' an avr6 irore 
sight of a beautiful object or of the dis- itf>dirTrfrai Kal 5 &v a\\o txtlvov. 
gust excited by a spectacle of contrary 19. Siaicptcrei TC avrfjs Kol <rvyKpkri] 
nature. The process of seeing, as such, These terms are explained when Plato 
is normally unattended by physical pain comes to treat of colours, 670 foil, 
or pleasure. 

238 HAATflNOS [64 E 

re aCrfj<; Kat <rvjKpiaei. rd o" ex fiei^ovtov jip<av 
eixovra ra> Bpoivri, BiaBiBovra Be ei? o\ov ra? Kivqaeis, 17801/0? 
KOI XuTra?, d\\orpiovfieva fiev Xinra?, KaOicrrafjieva Be et? 65 A 
TO at'To jraXii' ijBovds. o<ra Be Kara ajuxpov ra? drro^aip^a'ei^ 
5 eavroSv xal KevoMreis ei\rj<j>e, rd<t Se ir\rjptoa-i<: dGpoas ical Kara 
, Kevuxreto^ fiev dvaurffrjra, Tr\Tjp(ocreu>s Be altr0ijri,Ka yiy- 
Xi/ira? pev ov Trape^ei TO ffinjrqt rfj<; "^v^fjff, //eyurra? Be 
rjBovd<r eari Be evBij\a irep\ ra? evaBias. wra Be d7ra\\orpiovTai 
ftev dBpoa, Kara <rfiucpa Be fjuryis re et? ravro ird\iv eairrot? xaffi- 
10 ararai, rovvavrLov TOI? e^irpoffOev irdvra aTroBiBtotri' raura 8' ay B 
Trepl ra? xavtret? /cal ro/*a? TOU <r/*aTo? yiyvofievd etrri KardBij\a. 
XXVIII. Kai ra /*v 8^ /cotva TOW o-a>'/iTO9 iravros TraOij- 
para, roov T' eTraWfUcov ocrai TOW Bp<S<riv avrd ye'yovac'i,, (T^eBov 
eiprjrai' TO, S' ev iciois pApeaiv ijfuov yiyvopeva, rd re irdBrj tcai 
15 Ta? atrx'a? au T3v Bptovrtov, ireipareov eiirelv, av mg BwfapeBa. C 
rrpwrov ovv otrc rwv jfypMV irepi Xeyoirre? ev TO*? irpotrOev drre\l- 
Tropev, IBia ovra iradrjfiara irepl rr^v ryXwrrav, efjupavurreov y 
Bvvarov. <paiverai Be KO\ ravra, wtrrrep ovv KOI rd TroXXa, Bid 

4 ri avnJ : na^rAr S. g rai post M^ytf T addit A. TO&TO : rcu/n&r SZ. 
10 raf-ra : rcuVd A. 15 a$ omittit S, qai max post d^urrwr dedit avrd. 1 

post rpurof addit S. arcXiroji' : 

i. be paort*y |up*v] It will be re- natural nutriment of the nostrils, which 

membered that the visual stream consist- suffer waste when those are absent: but 

ed of very fine particles of fire ; not the the depletion is so imperceptible that it 

very finest, since the rays from some is only by sudden restoration of the na- 

objects penetrate and divide the visual rural state that we become conscious 

current : see 67 E. that there has been any lack. The state- 

7. Xvras pr ov vap^xci] When ment in the Phikbus* 1. /., though briefer, 

the dislocation has been very gradual amounts to the same: &ra raj iVMag 

and the restoration rapid, we have acute dmtff&irroi-s fxorra KOU aXrroti rds rXif- 

pleasure without any antecedent pain. puxrcis aurOifrat fai ij&eias faffapas Xwrdr 

Such pleasures are called in the Republic rapaSiittav. Aristotle tells us (<& satsu 

and Philtbus nadapai 7?5oroi, as distin- v 445* 16) that certain Pythagoreans be- 

gnished from IUTTCU. : see Republic 584 c lieved that some animals were nourished 

and Philfbtu 518, where the example of by smell. 

sweet smells is given, as well as beautiful 8. d-roXXorpiovrat |Uv dfipoa] On 

colours, shapes and sounds. In our pre- the other hand there are cases where the 

sent passage Plato adds a little to the disturbance is violent and causes severe 

explicitness of his statement: he shows pain, but the restoration is too gradual 

that &fffud are just as much jrariurrdffetf to afford any pleasure. This is to be 

as the IU.CTCU, only the rfrwo-ts being in- seen in wounds and burns and such like ; 

sensible, we felt no preliminary pain. the process of healing causes no pleasure. 

He seems to regard sweet odours as the 65 B 66 c, c. xxvtii. So much for the 

65 c] TIMAIOS. 239 

are entirely free from violence. On the other hand bodies 
formed of larger particles, reluctantly yielding to the agent, and 
spreading the motions through the whole frame, cause pleasure 
and pain ; when they are disturbed giving pain, and pleasure 
in being restored to their proper state. Those things which 
suffer a gradual withdrawing and emptying, but have their 
replenishment sudden and on a large scale, are insensible to 
the emptying but sensible of the replenishment ; so that while 
they cause no pain to the mortal part of the soul, they produce 
very intense pleasure. This is to be observed in the case of 
sweet smells. But when the parts are disturbed suddenly, but 
gradually and laboriously restored to their- former condition, 
they afford exactly the opposite result to the former : this may 
be seen in the case of burns and cuts on the body. 

XX VI II. Now the affections common to the body as a 
whole and the names that have been given to the agents which 
produce them have been well-nigh expounded : next we must 
try to explain, if we can, what takes place in the separate parts 
of us, both as to the affections of them and the causes on the 
part of the agents. First then we must set forth to the best 
of our p3wer all that we left unsaid concerning tastes, which 
are affections peculiar to the tongue. It appears that these, 

sensations affecting the whole body and 13. TOIS Spwriv avrd] i.e. the agents 

their causes; we have now to inquire or forces which produce the iraOrifjMTa. 
into the separate sensory faculties. We 16. ^v TOIS irp6o-0v <iirXCiro|Xv] The 

will first take taste. This depends upon reference would seem to be to the enume- 

the contraction or dilatation of the pores ration of XI>M* in 60 A. Plato's statement 

of the tongue by substances that are is quoted by Theophrastos de causis plan- 

dissolved in the mouth. Whatever power- tarum VI i: to the list of x v f*l given by 

fully contracts the small vessels of the Plato in the present passage he adds Xi- 

tongue is harsh and astringent; that which irapos. Farther on he gives the views of 

has a detergent effect we call alkaline, Demokritos, who referred differences of 

or if its action is milder, saline. A sub- taste to differences in the shape of the 

stance which is volatile and inflames atoms : cf. de sensu 65 69. Opinions 

the vessels is called pungent; and one not dissimilar to Plato's are ascribed to 

that produces a kind of fermentation or Alkmaion and to Diogenes of Apollonia 

effervescence is acid. All the foregoing by pseudo-Plutarch de pladtis philoso' 

exercise a disturbing influence upon the phorum IV 18. 

substance of the tongue: that which 17. irtpl -rqv y^"' 1 ""'] The under 
mollifies it and restores the disturbed surface of the soft palate is said by ana- 
particles to their natural state, producing tomists to share this function with the 
a pleasurable sensation, is named sweet. tongue. 

240 DAATHNOS [65 c 

<rvyKpi(r(av re rivwv ital SiaKpiaewv yiyve&Oai, Trpus 8e avrals 
KexprjaOai fj,d\\6v n rcov aXXwj/ rpa^vrrfcL re KOI \iorr)<Tiv. 
oVa (jv yap el&iovra irepl ra <Xe/3ta, olovTrep BoKifiela T^<? 
ry\c0rrr)<; rera/jueva eVi rrjv Kap&iav, et? ra vorepd rrjs crap/cos real D 

5 a-TraXa ejATTiTrrovra yrjiva p-epr] Kararrjtcofjieva ^vvdyet ra <Xe/3ia 
/cat aTTofypaivei, rpa^yrepa [j,ev ovra <rrpv(f>vd, f)rrov Se rpa^y- 
vovra avcrrrjpd (paiverai- ra Be rovrwv re pwrrriica teal irdv ro 
7repl rrjv j\<ar7av diro'jr\vvovra, Trepa p,ev rov fj,erplov rovro 
Spdovra xal irpoa'errCka^avop.eva, axrre dirorr]Keiv avrt}s rf)<; <j*v- 

10 <r(i)<t, olov r\ rwv \irpcov BvvafjLis, iriKpd irdvff ovrws oovopacrrai, E 
ra 8e inroSeeo-repa rrjs Xirpca&ov? efeeo? eVi TO perpiov re rfj pir 
d\vfcd avev TriKporijros rpa^e/a? /cat <j)i\a 

rd Se rrj rov crro/iaTO9 0epfj,6rrjrt, 
\eaivbjieva VTT' avrov, ^vveKTrvpov/Aeva Kal ird\i,v avrd avnicdovra 

15 TO SiaOepfArjvav, fapcfjievd re VTTO ACOV^OTT^TO? dva> Trpo? Ta9 rfjs 
/ce(f)a\fj<f alaQricreis, repvovrd re trdvG 1 oTroo-ot? av Trpoo-Trlirrr), Sid 
ravras rd$ Swdfjueis Spifiea irdvra roiavra eXe^;^. rwv Be avr<av 66 A 
7rpo\\7rrvcrijieva)v pev VTTO o"r}Tre$6vo<>, el<; Se rds crrevdf 

3 5oKifj.eia : SOKI/J.IOL HSZ. 14 \eaiv6jj.eva : \iaiv6fj.ei>a ASZ. 

i. 8id ervYKpCcrtwv] Nearly all sense- all taste is produced by substances in a 

perception is reduced by Plato to con- liquid state, whether liquefied before or 

traction and expansion, which however after entering the mouth. In this opinion 

in different organs produce different Aristotle coincides ; see for instance tfe 

classes of sensation. This is the agency anima II x 422 a 17 ovQlv 8t iroiei \vfj.ov 

by which taste is brought about, though atffQrjfftv avev vypbrtiros, d\\' fx ei tvtp- 

the tongue is in a peculiar degree affected yelq.rj Swap-ei vyp&TrjTa. Aristotle's theory 

by the roughness or smoothness of the of taste will be found in that chapter. 

entering particles. 6. <rrpv<j)vd...av(rTT)pd] The first of 

irpos 8i avrais] sc. Tats crvyxptffeffi these words evidently means 'astringent': 

Kal 8iaicplffe<ri. avcrrripa may be translated ' harsh ' ; but 

3. otovircp 8oKi(iia] The word SOKL- possibly it answers more to our 'bitter' 

Hfiov or doxl/Mov signifies an instrument than iriKpd: at least we should hardly 

for testing, and is applied by Plato to call soda bitter. The same word is ap- 

the small blood-vessels of the tongue, plied to alkaline flavours by Aristotle 

which he holds to be both the cause of de sensu iv 44i b 6. irixpbv is defined by 

taste, through their contraction and ex- Theophrastos /. /. as (p6apriK6>> rrjs iryp<5- 

pansion, and also the means of trans- rrfros rj TTTIKTIKOV ^ SIJKTIKOV rj dwXws rpa^vv 

milling Ihe irdOrina to the seal of con- 17 /LtoXiora rpaxvv. 

sciousness. Of the nerves Plato, like 12. $l\a. (j.d\Xov r](i,iv 4>avTaTcu] 

Aristolle, underslood nothing at all : their This is mentioned because all the sub- 

functions are attribuled by him to the slances hitherto enumerated, including 

tf>\tpia. salt, have a disturbing action upon the 

5. KaTarr|K6|Acva] Plato holds that substance of the tongue, and are there- 

66 A] TIMAIOS. 241 

like most other things, are brought about by contraction and 
dilation, besides which they have more to do than other sen- 
sations with roughness and smoothness in the agents. For 
whenever earthy particles enter in by the little veins which are 
a kind of testing instruments of the tongue, stretched to the 
heart, and strike upon the moist and soft parts of the flesh, 
these particles as they are being dissolved contract and dry 
the small veins ; and if they are very rough, they are termed 
'astringent'; if less so 'harsh'. Such substances again as are 
detergent and rinse the whole surface of the tongue, if they 
do this to an excessive degree and encroach so as to dissolve 
part of the structure of the flesh, as is the property of alka- 
lies all such are termed 'bitter': but those which fall short of 
the alkaline quality and rinse the tongue only to a moderate 
extent are saline without bitterness and seem to us agreeable 
rather than the reverse. Those which share the warmth of 
the mouth and are softened by it, being simultaneously in- 
flamed and themselves in turn scorching that which heated 
them, and which owing to their lightness fly upward to the 
senses of the head, penetrating all that is in their path owing 
to these properties all such substances are called ' pungent '. 
But sometimes these same substances, having been already 
refined by decomposition, enter into the narrow veins, being 

fore presumably disagreeable. The irri- There seems a lack of finish in his de- 
lation produced by salt is however so finition. 

mild that it amounts to no more than 17. TWV Si O.VTWV irpoXeXerrruo-iA^vcov] 

a pleasant stimulation of the organ. In this portentous sentence it is quite pro- 

13. rd 84 TTJ Toii o-TOjxaros 6eppt6rr|Ti] bable that some corruptions may lurk. 

Compare the view assigned to Alkmaion But no emendation suggests itself of 

by Theophrastos de sensu 25 : yXurrri sufficient plausibility to justify its ad- 

5 rota x"/* 01 ^ xpiveiv \\iapav y&p ovffav mission into the text, although I have 

Kal fj.a\aK-fjv T-f)Ktiv Tiy OepfioTriTi' 5^xe<rOai little doubt that e'xoTw should be read 

5 Kal 5ia8i86vat 5iA TTJV pavoTirra rijs for tx VTa - Stallbaum's proposed alte- 

awaXoTijTos. rations are the result of his not under- 

15. irpos TCIS TTJS Ke4>aXrjs aiaOrjertis] standing the construction : 6<ro d^poj is 

A spoonful of strong mustard would pro- parallel to rots yewdeat and equivalent to 

bably produce very much the sort of ex- TOIS foa afyos fveffriv. As for the in- 

perience which Plato describes. Theo- finitives after a 817, they are incurably 

phrastos says 8pi/ 3 TOV VIJK.TIKOV y ungrammatical : we must either suppose 

drjKTiKoi* rj txKpiriKov TTJS li> TV ffvfj.<pvT({> that the construction is carried on from 

0fp/jMTr,Tos cis Toi> avu) TOTTov T? ^X^ 7 ? m t ne previous sentence, or that 

j x 1 '^'' KavrtKw ^ OepfiairriKOv. it never recovers from the effects of wcrre 

P. T. 16 

242 TIAATflNOS [66 A- 

, Kal rot? evovaiv avr60t fj,epe<ri yewBea-i teal ocra depot 
v/jbfjiTpiav e^ovra, wcrre Kivr/cravra Trepl a\\v)\a Troteiv KVKaaQai^ 
KVK(afjLva Be TrepiTTLTrreiv re Kal els erepa evBvopeva erepa Kol\a 
dTrep<yd%(T0at TrepLreivo^eva Tot? elaiovaiv, a Brj voriBos Trepl depa B 
5 KoiXrjs Trepiradela-rjs, rare JJAV yewBovt, rore Be teal KaOapas, vorepa 
la depot vBara KolXa Trepifaprj re yevea0at, Kal rd fj-ev rf)<t 
Biacfravels TrepKTrrjvai K\.r)0el(ras ovo/jua 7ro/ji(j)o\vyat, ra 
Be r^9 yetoSovs o/toO Kivovpevr)*; re Kal alpo^evrj^ %eaiv re Kal 
typcoaiv eTTiKXrjv \e%0f)vai TO Be TOVTWV airtov rwv TraOfj^a'rwv 
to ov 7rpoa-pr)0r}vai. ^v^iraai Be rot? Trept ravra elprj/Aevois irddo^ 
evavrlov a/ir evavrias etrrl Trpocpdcrews, OTrorav r) rtav elaiovrwv C 
%varacn<s ev vypols, oliceia rfj rrjs 7\fwTT7/9 e^et 7re(f>vKvla, \eaivg 
pev e7ra\ei<pov<ra rd rpa^vvdevra, TO, Be Trapd <f)V(riv 
r) Keyvjieva TO, fiev vvar/r), rd Be %d\a, Kal Travd o n 
15 iSpvrj Kara (pixriv, tfBv Kal 7rpocr<j)i\e<; Travrl irdv TO rotovrov tapa 
r<av ftiaiwv 7ra0r)/jidr(i)V <yiyvo/Jivov KeK\r)rai y\VKV. 

XXIX. Kat rd /JLCV ravrrj ravra' Trepl Be Brj rrjv rcav D 
jjLVKrr/pcov Bvva/j,t,v, e'lBrj p<ev OVK evi' TO yap rcav ocrfidav irav 
yfjuyeves, eiBei Be ovBevl ^v^e^Ke ^v^erpia Trpo? TO riva e^eiv 

\i \fatvri : \eialvri ASZ. 17 STJ post T& ptv addit S. ig f^eiv: trx^v SZ. 

early in the present one. However loose natural position of its constituent par- 

the syntax may be, the sense is not on tides, and those which restore it. Of 

the whole obscure. Acids are substances the former there are the six varieties 

which have been refined by fermentation ; herein before enumerated ; of the latter 

these, when they enter the mouth, form a there is but one, which we term sweet. 

combination with the particles of earth This contracts what is unnaturally ex- 

and air which are therein, and stir and panded and expands what is unnaturally 

mix them up in such a way as to produce contracted, and thus is ' a remedy of 

films of moisture enclosing air, in other forcible affections', since by restoring the 

words, bubbles: a kind of effervescence natural condition it produces a pleasant 

in fact is produced by the action of the and soothing effect. 

acid on the substance of the tongue. The 13. vvjTWTa...Kx v F^ va "-!w*YD--- 

words els erepa evSv6/j.eva ?repo KoT\a \aX<(.] Throughout this dialogue a dis- 

aTrepyAfeffdai irfpiTeiv6/j.eva rois elaiovffiv tinct inclination to chiasmus may be ob- 

are not clear : it would seem that the served. 

earthy particles within, by gathering 66 D 67 C, c. xxix. Odours cannot be 

round the entering particles of acid, classified according to kinds. For no 

vacate their former positions which are element in its normal state can be per- 

filled by air surrounded by the moisture ceived by smell, because the vessels of 

attending the dissolution of the acid. the nostrils are too narrow to admit 

10. irciOos fravrfov] The X^M * which water or earth and too wide to be ex- 

act upon the tongue are thus divided into cited by air or fire. They can thus only 

two classes, those which disturb the perceive an element in process of disso- 

D] TIMAIOS. 243 

duly proportioned to the earthy particles and the particles of 
air which are there, so that they set them in motion and mingle 
them together, and thereby cause them to jostle against one 
another and taking up other positions to form new hollows 
extended round the entering particles which hollows consist 
of a film of moisture, sometimes earthy, sometimes pure, em- 
bracing a volume of air ; and thus they form moist capsules con- 
taining air : in some cases the films are of pure moisture and 
transparent and are called bubbles ; in others they are of earthy 
liquid which effervesces and rises all together, when the name 
of seething and fermentation is given to it : and the cause 
of all these conditions is termed ' acid '. The opposite affection 
to all those which have been described is produced by an oppo- 
site cause : when the structure of the entering particles amid 
the moisture, having a natural affinity to the tongue's normal 
condition, smooths it by mollifying the roughened parts, and 
relaxes or contracts what is unnaturally contracted or expanded, 
and settles everything as much as possible in its natural state. 
Every such remedy of violent affections is to all of us pleasant 
and agreeable, and has received the name of ' sweet '. 

XXIX. Enough of this subject. As regards the faculty 
of the nostrils no classification can be made. For smells are 
of a half-formed nature : and no class of figure has the adap- 
tation requisite for producing any smell, but our veins in this 

lution. The object of smell then is either 19. e'tSei 8^ ovStvC] That is, it does 

vapour, which is water changing to air, not possess the structure of any of the 

or mist, which is air changing to water. four, fire, air, water, and earth. We were 

That the object of smell is denser than able to classify tastes, because we could 

air can be proved by placing some ob- point to a definite substance which caused 

stacle before the nostrils and then forcibly the sensation in each case. Aristotle 

drawing breath : the air will pass in, but agrees with Plato that the sense of smell 

without any odour. The only classifica- TITTOV e&di6piffr6v fort, de anima n ix 

tion we can make is that scents which 421" 7: this he attributes to the fact that 

disturb the substance of the nostrils are mankind possesses this sense in a very 

unpleasant, while those which restore the imperfect degree, being in this respect 

natural state are pleasant. inferior to many animals. In the same 

Sound is a vibration of theair, impinging chapter 42i b 9 he says air or water is 

upon the ear and thence transmitted first the medium of smell : ftm 5 /col ?; 5ff(f)pr)- 

to the brain and finally to the liver : the <rts 5td rov /iTai5, olov tUpos ^ vdarof 

pitch depends upon the rapidity, the ural y&p TO. tvvSpa. doKov<nv 6<r^ afoffd- 

quality upon the regularity, and the veffOai. Elsewhere Aristotle denies that 

loudncss upon the extent of the motion. smells cannot be classified : de sensn v 

1 6 2 



[66 D 

rjv' XX' rjp&v al Trepl ravra <>Xe/3e<? TT/JO<? fiev TO, 7779 vbaros 
re <yevr) (rrevorepai ^vvecrrrjcrav, TT/OO? 8e ra jrvpot depot re evpv- 
repai, Bio rovrwv ovoelt ov&evos oafArjs iratTrore ffcrOero rivot, aXX 
f) Ppexo/jvcov rj a"rj7rofj,ev(i)V r) rrjtco/jievwv 77 Qv^iw^ikvwv yiyvovrai 
5 Tiv&v. /&Ta/3aXXoz>T09 jap vSarot ei9 depa depot re elt v8a>p ev E 

KaTrrot 77 
, TO Se e 

T3 /ieTafi) rovratv yeyovaa-iv, elcrl 8e ocr/ial 
rovrcov 8e TO /z,ei> e^ depot 619 
t? aepa Kairvos' '60ev \e7rrorepat, 

8e oa-fjial !;v,u,Tracrai <yey6va(Tiv depot. Sr)\ovvrai Se, ojrorav 
10 avrit^pa^Oevrot Trepl rrjv dvairvorjv ayrj ri<> ftla TO Trvevfui et? 
avrov rare yap GO-//,?) fiev ovSe/iia ^vvSitjOelrat,, TO Se Trvevfjia 
rwv cxrfJLoiv eprjfjiwOev avrd /MOVOV eTrerai, Si ovv ravra dvwvvpa 
ra rovrwv 7roiK.i\/j,ara yeyovev, OVK e/c TTO\\WV ov& a7rX3i/ elbrnv 67 A 

2 ffTfv6repat : ffTevdrepai AZ. 3 d\\i rj: dXX' deJ S. 6 eial d : elffl re S. 

12 di' otv: dtf oZv ASZ. 

443 b 17 o^ yap uxnrep nvts <f>a.ffiv, oiiK 
Herri? etSrj rov 6ff<j>pai'Tov, dXX' tariv : a 
little above he gives a list; /col yap Spi- 
/j.flai Kal y\VKtai elfflv dfffjtal xal avartipai 
Kal ffrpv(f>val Kal \iirapal, Kal rois TriKpois 
(sc. X U M' J ) Ta s <roirpAj av rtj dvaXoyov 
etiroi. Galen's opinion concerning this 
sense is similar to Plato's: see de plac, 
Hipp, et Plat. VII 628 TT^ITTOV yap Si] 
TOVTO ZffTiv alaOrjT'/ipiov, OI)K 6vTUv irtvre 
, lireidij TO rCiv dff/jLwv ytvos v 
aty rty <ptffiv tvrlv atpos Kal vBaros, 
ws Kal nXaTwi* elwev iv Ti/ 

3. dXXci TJ Ppexojit'vwv] The sense 
of smell then perceives matter in an in- 
termediate condition, as it is passing from 
one form to another. Herakleitos seems 
to have held some similar view: see 
Aristotle de settstt v 443 a 23 Sib Kal 
'Hpd/cXeiros OVTUS etpriKfv, wj el irdvra TO. 
6vra KO7rv6s ytvoiro, fives av diayvoiev. 
Plato's doctrine of smell however, when 
considered in connexion with his cor- 
puscular theory, has a striking peculiarity. 
Only o/tuxXi; and Katrvbs can be smelt, 
he says. But what are b/jdx\T) and Kairvbs ? 
We cannot say simply that o/jix^tj is the 
densest form of air and ACOTT^JJ the rarest 
form of water, because Plato expressly 
tells xis that they are transitional forms 

between air and water. Now the densest 
form of air is still formed of octahedrons, 
and the rarest form of water still formed 
of icosahedrons ; so that no condensation 
of the one or rarefaction of the other 
constitutes any approach to a transition 
between the two. Now since OM^X^ 7 ? and 
Kairvfa are not composed either of octa- 
hedrons or of icosahedrons, of what na- 
ture are the material particles which smell 
perceives? for no other regular solid 
figure beyond the five exists in nature. 
We are compelled to suppose that the 
agent which excites smell is actually un- 
formed matter matter, that is, which is 
dissolved out of one form, but not yet 
remoulded in another. It is evident that 
if the particles of water are dissolved and 
remoulded as particles of air, this is a 
physical process taking place in time : 
there is a time therefore when matter 
does exist in an unformed condition ; and 
just in this time smell has the power of 
perceiving it. Aristotle, whose objec- 
tions to the theory are stated in the 
chapter of the de sensu above cited, has 
nothing to say about this. 

4. Yfy VOVT<u ] SC- a * bffna.1. 

7. TO (iiv % cU'pos] Aristotle puts 
it rather differently : meteorologica i ix 

6 7 A] 


part are formed too narrow for earth and water, and too wide 
for fire and air: for which cause no one ever perceived any 
smell of these bodies ; but smells arise from substances which 
are being either liquefied or decomposed or dissolved or evapo- 
rated : for when water is changing into air and air into water, 
odours arise in the intermediate condition ; and all odours are 
vapour or mist, mist being the conversion of air into water, and 
vapour the conversion of water into air ; whence all smells are 
subtler than water and coarser than air. This is proved when 
any obstacle is placed before the passages of respiration, and 
then one forcibly inhales the air : for then no smell filters through 
with it, but the air bereft of all scent alone follows the inhala- 
tion. For this reason the complex varieties of odour are un- 
named, and are ranked in classes neither numerous nor simple : 

theory of smell which we have been dis- 
cussing. Martin curiously misunderstands 
this sentence, supposing that two people 
are concerned in the experiment: but 
Ttcds di>Ti<f>pa.x6vTos is of course neuter 
'if an obstacle be placed'. It would 
seem then as if Plato conceived matter 
in its passage from air to water, or from 
water to air, to be made up of irregular 
figures intermediate in size between the 
particles of air and those of water: 
but how this comes about he does not 
explain. Theophrastos says curiously 
enough) in de sensu 6 Trept 5 6cr0p^<rews 
Ko.1 yewrews /cat a<j>TJs 6'Xws ovd^v etpyKtv 
[d nxdrwv] : he means probably that 
Plato's account treats more of the al<r- 
Qffrov than the aiaOijffis : fiaXXov dxpi- 
ftoXoyelTo.1 irepl T<M> aiadyruv : still the 
statement cannot be considered accurate. 

12. 81* ovv ravra] Although all the 
mss. agree in giving Si/' ovv, it is impossi- 
ble to retain it. For the Svo tldi) could 
only refer to the two divisions specified 
below, which are not dvuvvfjia, but 7781) 
and \vwi)pbv. It is the endless diversity 
of different scents that fall under these 
two heads T& TOVTUV Trot/c/X^ara which 
are dv&vvfM.. 

13. OVK ^K iroXXcwv] Tastes were di- 
vided into numerous species, which were 

2 <m 5' i) /j.ev e vSaros di>a6v/jda<ris 
17 8' 0- dtpos els vStap vt<j>os' 6fj,lx\f] 
Trepirrw/aa TI/S e/j v5up <rvy- 

8. vSaros is cUpa] If the matter 
which is perceived by smell has no formed 
particles (as it cannot have), it is hard 
to see why it should not be so perceived 
when on the point of passing from water 
or air into fire, or the contrary: and in 
fact this seems actually suggested by Ov- 
fj.iwfj.tvui' just above. However Plato 
presently affirms that the substances which 
excite smell, because they are in a tran- 
sitional state between octahedrons and 
icosahedrons, are subtler than one and 
coarser than the other. This consequence 
seems equally hard to deduce from any in- 
terpretation of Plato's corpuscular theory. 

9. 6<r|icU] i.e. the several substances 
which excite the olfactory organ. 

TIVOS avTi<j>pax0^vTOs] When the air 
is filled with any odour, if a handker- 
chief, for instance, be pressed to the 
nostrils, and then a strong inhalation be 
taken, the air will force its way through 
the barrier, but the scent will not ac- 
company it ; whence Plato deduces the 
inference that the matter which excites the 
sensation of smell is less subtle than the par- 
ticles of air. This led him to devise the 


[67 A- 

ovra, d\\d Bi%fi TO 0* rjBv Kal TO \vTrrjpbv avTo0i 

\eyeo-0ov, TO fjbev Tpa%vv6v TC Kal fiia^ofjievov TO KVTOS airav, ocrov 

rjfjitoV /JLCTa^V KOpvfyrjS TOV T OpfyaXoV KCtTat, TO B TttVTOV TOVTO 

KaTairpavvov Kal Trd\iv rj TretyvKev dyaTrr/T(i)<f aTroBiBov. 

TpiTov Be ala-QrjTiicov ev rjfitv pepo? eTrio-KOTtovat TO Trepl TTJV 
aKorjv, oY a? atTta? Ta Trepl avTo ^vpftaivei Tra9rjp,aTa, \KTeov. B 

%P l "r rv 'Xfl^ TrXrjyrjv BiaBiBofAevTjV, Trjv Be inr avTrjs 
>, airo Trjs Ke<j>a\fjs fj,ev dp%o/jLevr)v, TeXevToScrav Be Trepl Trjv 
to ToO 777raT09 eBpav, aKor'jv' oatj 8' avTr/s Ta^eia, 6elav, oar} Be 
(SpaBvTepa, /3apVTepav TT/V Be opoiav op,a\r)v Te Kal \etav, Trjv 
Be evavTiav Tpa^eiav p,e<y<'i\r)v Be TTJV Tro\\rjv, oarj Be evavTia, C 

TO. Be Trepl vfi<f>a)v[a<> avTwv ev Tot9 vaTepov Xe%^cro- 
dvdfyKi} pri0f/vat. 
15 XXX. TeTapTov Br) \onrbv eTt 76^09 rjfuv alaOrjTiKov, o 

6 Si' as : Si' as 5' A. 1 1 fSpadirrtpa : Ppaxvrtpa- A. 13 ra 5t : ras 5^ A. 

an-Xa, because we could name the precise 
kind of substance which produced each 
and the mode of its action: smells are 
not dirXa, because they do not proceed 
from any definite single substance, nor 
TroXXd, because we can only classify them 
as agreeable or the reverse. Although 
a stricter classification than this can be 
made, Plato rightly regards taste as much 
more orXoDr than smell. For the more 
complex flavours which we ' taste ' are 
really perceived by smell. 

2. TO (xiv Tpa^vvov] Plato's classifi- 
cation is based on his broad distinction 
between irritant and soothing agents. 

3. (WTO^U KOpV<f>T]S TOV T O|i<f>oXov] 

This must apply to extremely pungent 
and volatile scents, such as the fumes of 
strong ammonia: compare the descrip- 
tion of 5pi/j.ta in 65 E. 

7. rr\v 81' WTWV] Plato's account of 
sound is in many respects consonant with 
modern acoustic science. He is correct 
in attributing it to vibrations which are 
propagated through the air until they 
strike upon the ear, and in saying that 
the loudness of the sound is propor- 
tionate to the amplitude of the sound- 

wave (/j.eya\7it> 8t TTJV TroXXijj'). He is 
also right in referring smoothness in the 
sound to regularity of the vibrations ; for 
this is what constitutes the difference 
between a musical sound and mere noise ; 
in the former case the vibrations are 
executed in regular periods, in the latter 
they are irregular. His explanation of 
the pitch is correct if by 'swiftness' he 
means the rapidity with which the vi- 
brations are performed, but erroneous 
if he refers to the celerity of the sound's 
transmission through the air: from 80 A, 
B it would appear that he included both, 
supposing the more rapid vibrations to be 
propagated more swiftly through the at- 

eyK((>aXov T Kal atpcvros] The con- 
struction of all these genitives is a 
little puzzling. Stallbaum constructs 
eyKe<f>d\ov re Kal al'/ioTos with did, but 
the interposition of UTT' dtpos surely ren- 
ders this indefensible. I think we should 
join the words with irX-rjyijv: 'a striking 
of the brain and blood by the air through 
the ears '. Plato conceives the vibrations, 
entering through the ears, to reach the 
brain and to be from thence transmitted 



only two conspicuous kinds are in fact here distinguished, plea- 
sant and unpleasant. The latter roughens and irritates all the 
cavity of the body that is between the head and the navel ; the 
former soothes this same region and restores it with contentment 
to its own natural condition. 

A third organ of sensation in us which we have to examine 
is that of hearing, and we must state the causes whence arise the 
affections connected with it. Let us in general terms define 
sound as a stroke transmitted through the ears by the air and 
passed through the brain and the blood to the soul; while the 
motion produced by it, beginning in the head and ending in the 
region of the liver, is hearing. A rapid motion produces a shrill 
sound, a slower one a deeper sound; regular vibration gives an 
even and smooth sound, and the opposite a harsh one; if the 
movement is large, the sound is loud; if otherwise, it is slight. 
Concerning accords of sound we must speak later on in our 

XXX. A fourth faculty of sense yet remains, the intricate 

through the blood-vessels to the liver. 
The liver appears to be selected because 
that region is the seat of the nutritive 
faculty of the soul, 70 D: and since the 
sensation of sound, as such, does not 
appeal to the intellectual organ, it is 
transmitted to that faculty which is speci- 
ally concerned with sensation. 

13. TO. 8J ircpl vji<f>covias] The ac- 
count of concords is given in 80 A, where 
the transmission of sounds is explained. 
Aristotle's opinions concerning sound will 
be found in de anima II viii 4i9 b 4 foil., 
and scattered through the . treatise de 
se n sit. 

67 c 69 A, c. xxx. The process of 
vision has already been explained : it 
only remains to give an account of 
colours. The particles which stream off 
from the objects perceived are some of 
them larger than those which compose 
the visual current, some smaller, and 
some of equal size. In case they are 
equal, the object whence they proceed 
is colourless and transparent ; if they arc- 
smaller, they dilate the visual current ; 

if larger, they contract it. White is pro- 
duced by dilation, black by contraction. 
Brightness and gleaming are the effects 
of a very swift motion of the particles, 
which divide the visual stream up to the 
very eyes themselves and draw forth 
tears. Red is the product of another 
kind of fire which penetrates the visual 
stream and mingles with the moisture of 
the eye. The other colours, yellow, violet, 
purple, chestnut, grey, buff, dark blue, 
pale blue, green, are produced by com- 
mixtures of the aforesaid, but in what 
proportions mingled God alone knows. 

The physical processes we have been de- 
scribing belong to the rank of subsidiary 
causes. For we must remember that 
there are in nature two classes of causes, 
the divine and the necessary; whereof 
we must search out the divine for the sake 
of happiness, and the necessary for the 
sake of the divine. 

15. alcrOiyriKov] It is again a ques- 
tion whether we ought not to read ala- 
Brfr6v, since colours are the object of 
investigation. Here however I think the 



[67 c- 

8ie\eo-0at, Set <rv*)(yd ev eavrq> 7roitci\fJ,ara 
ftev p^pda? Ka\e<ra/J,ev, (frXoya rwv <r(0fj,dr(0v etcda-rwv aTroppe- 
ovo~av, oS/ret y/i/zerpa /-topia e^ovaav 7rpo<? aia-Orjcriv. 6Sjre&><? S' ev 
rot? Trpoa-dev av TO 7repl TWV atVtW T?7<? yei><Tea)<; eppr)0rj. ryo D 

5 ovv rutv ^pwfidrwv Trept f^akicrra ei/co? TrpeVot r av TOV 
\6yov i%e\Qelv, rd <f)p6fjiva oVo rwv d\\o)v /iopta 
re et<? rr/v oifriv rd fj,ev e\drra), rd 8e fjuel^co, rd 8' t'cra rot? avrfjs 
rf)<f o-^rea)? fj,epe<ri,v elvat' rd [iev ovv to~a dvalo-Orjra, d 8>) /cat 
8ia(f>avrj \eyofjiev, rd Be /iei^tw Kal eXarrw, ra /Ai^ o-vyxpivovra, rd 

10 Se Siaicpivovra avrrjv, rot? Trept T^I/ o-dpica 0epfJ>ot<{ KOI \|ru^pot? 
/cat rot? Trept rrjv y\wrrav o~rpv(f)voi<; /cat bcra OeppavrtKa E 
oi/ra Spt/iea e/taXecra/iey dSe\<f>d elvat,, rd re \ev/ca /cat r 
fj.e\ava, e/ceivwv rraO^ara yeyovora ev d\\(a yevei rd avrd, 
<f>avra6iJ,va 8e d\\a Sid ravra<; rds atrta9. OUTO)? GUI' avra 

15 7rpoo-pr)reov,-ro fiev Sta/cptrt/coy T'7? o-^rews \evKov, TO 8' evavriov 
avrov p,e\av, rrjv be 6vrepav (f>opdv /cat yevovs Trupo? erepov Trpoer- 

4 aC r6 : ai/ri A. aurwi' HSZ. 6X^70 post yevfoeus e margine codicis A 

dedit H. eieci cum SZ. 5 TOV tirieiicrj \6yov scripsi: rbi> tv-ieucr) \6ytf AH. ewitiKe? 
SZ. sed forsitan melius legatur irptirov T' dv 

ms. reading is defensible : we have, says 
Plato, to examine a fourth faculty of 
sense, which has various Troi/ciX/wiTa : 
the iroiid\(Jia.Ta being the sensations we 
call colours. But he passes immediately 
from the subjective to the objective 
aspect of x/>o a ' 0X6*ya TUI> ffu/j-druv e/cder- 
TUV diropptovffav. 

3. o\\iu ^vp.p.erpa (Jtopia] i. e. par- 
ticles of the right size to coalesce with 
the o^ewj pevfj-a and form with it one 
sympathetic body. Stallbaum says Plato 
is following Empedokles, but this is in- 
correct : see Theophrastos de seitsu 7 
'EMTeSotfXijs 5^ irepl airaffuv 6/uoi'ws \tyft, 
KO.I <f>r)ai T(J) tvapubrTeiv els TOI)S ir6povs 
TOI>S eKdffrris aicrffdveffBai : cf. pseudo- 
Plutarch de placitis philosophorum I 15. 
The views of Aristotle concerning colour 
may be gathered from de sensu iii 439* 18 
foil, and from the not very luminous 
treatise de coloribus. Aristotle considered 
the beauty of colours to depend upon 
numerical ratios: see de sensu iii 439 b 31 
TO. fjitv yap eV dpi0/ji.ois etiXoyiffrois xp^/xara, 

KaOdirfp Ki rds ffv/Mpuvtas, TO. -f)5iffTa 
TUV xP u f JL< ^ TUV f^at SOKOVVTCI, olov TO 
dXovpyov Kal <f>oiviKovv Kal 6\ty' drra rot- 
aura, 5t' ijvirfp alriav Kal at ffv/jicpiavlai 
6\iyai, ra 5^ /j.ri fv apidnois raXXa xpu- 
fj.ara, rj Kal irdffas ras xP as *" a'/>i0yao?j 
eli'at, ras /J.ei> Tfrayfj^vas raj 5 draxrous, 
*cal aurdj rawras, flrai* ny Ka.9a.pal ui<n, 5td 
TO fj.ff tv apiOnois elvai rotai^Tay ylveaOai. 
This has rather a Pythagorean sound. 

6. TO. 4>p6)j.eva diro TUJV dXXcov |i6- 
pia] i.e. the particles of fire which stream 
off from the object : it must be remem- 
bered that Plato's conception differs from 
the Demokritean or Empedoklean efflu- 
ences, inasmuch as he does not hold that 
any image of the object is thrown off. 
7-77^ Stf/iv again = TO r-JJs o\f/ews pevfw.. 

8. TO, \&v ovv lo-a] Colours are 
then classified according to the relative 
size of the fiery particles from the object. 
If they are equal to those of the visual 
stream, we perceive no colour, but trans- 
parency alone: if smaller, so that they 
penetrate and dilate the <tyeus pev/j.a, the 

E] TIMAIO2. 249 

varieties of which it is our part to classify. To these we have 
given the name of colours, which consist of a flame streaming off 
from every object, having its particles so adjusted to those of 
the visual current as to excite sensation. We have already set 
forth the causes which gave origin to vision: thus therefore it 
will be most natural and fitting for a rational theory to treat of 
the question of colours. The particles which issue from outward 
objects and meet the visual stream are some of them smaller, 
some larger, and some equal in size to the particles of that 
stream. Those of equal size cause no sensation, and these we 
call transparent; but the larger and smaller, in the one case by 
contracting, in the other by dilating it, produce effects akin to 
the action of heat and cold on the flesh, and to the action on 
the tongue of astringent tastes and the heating sensations which 
we termed pungent. These are white and black, affections 
identical with those just mentioned, but occurring in a different 
class and seeming to be different for the causes aforesaid. We 
must then classify them as follows. What dilates the visual 
stream is white, and the opposite thereof is black. A swifter 
motion belonging to a different kind of fire, which meets and 

colours produced are light and bright; if by sensibles excite sensation. Stallbaum, 

they are larger and compress the stream, following Stephanus, understands etceivuv 

the colours tend to be dark. to refer to deppa and ^vxpa, ffrpvtpvd and 

dva<r0i]Ta] Since the particles are dpi/j.ta, but this does not appear to me 

equal to those of the visual current, they to give so good a sense. v aXXy y^vet 

do not affect the homogeneous structure in another organ or mode of sensation, 

of the latter. It is not generally recognised, Plato means, 

10. TOIS irepl T^V crapKa] Plato that the process is the same in the case 

merely means that the physical processes of sight as in that of taste, because the 

of contraction and dilation are the same sensible effect is so widely dissimilar, 
in both instances; for in the other cases 14. 810, Tavras rds curias] i.e. be- 

mentioned the sensations are pleasant or cause they are tv aXXy ytva and are not 

unpleasant, whereas the phenomena of attended by pleasure or pain, 
vision are, physically regarded, unac- 16. Tqv 8* 6vr'pav] 1! right is dis- 

companied either by pleasure or by pain. tinguished from white (i) by dissimilarity 

13. KCvo>v iraOiiiAaTa] I take tied- between its fiery particles and those of 

vuv to refer to TO. ffvyKplvovra. Kal diaxpi- white, (2) by its more rapid motion. It 

vovra.: the iraO-fi/j-ara belonging to the penetrates the o^ews ptv/jia right up to 

objects affecting the eye are the same as the eyes, the pores of which it displaces 

the Tradri/jLara belonging to the objects of and dissolves, drawing forth a mixture 

taste &c, namely fftiyKpuris and 5io/c/;t<ns. of fire and water which we call tears. 

For the use of jra^a compare 6 1 c, And so when the entering and issuing 

where ira.0riua.ra. are the properties where- fires mingle and are quenched in the 

250 TIAATHNOS [67 E 

TriTTTOVcrav teal Biatcplvovcrav rrjv o-^riv fJ>e%pi TU>V 
re TWV o<f)6a\iJLU>v ra? Bie6Bovs j3ia BicoOovcrav KOI rr/Kovcrav, r rrvp ' 
ddpoov teal vB(i)p, o Bdtcpvov /caXoO/Ltev, etceWev eK%eovcrav, 
Be ovcrav Trvp e evavTias aTravTwcrav, teal TOV fiev eKTrij- 
5 BGOVTOS Trvpbs olov air d&TpaTTrjs, rov S' elcriovros KOI Trepl TO 
voTepdv tcaTacr/SevvvfJievov, TravToBaTrwv ev rfj Kv/crjcrei ravrrj <yvyvo- 
/j,evcov xpcofjudrtov, p,ap^apv^d^ /juev TO Trddos 7r/3ocret7ro/ie^, TO Be 
TOVTO d7repya6f4evov \a/j,7rpov T Kal o"rL\^ov eTroivofjidcrafAev. TO 
8e TOVTCOV av iiera^v TTU/OO? yevos, TT/OO? jj,ev TO TCOV o/i/zaTWi/ vypbv B 
10 d^iKVov^evov teal Kepavvvpevov avTw, a-Ti\6ov 8e ov, TTJ 8e Sta 
civyrj Tov TTf/oo? /Ai<yvv jjuevov ^pcoyLta evaifjiov Trapaa^o- 
epvOpov Xeyopev. \a/j,7rp6v Te epvdpw \evtcw T 
%av6ov yeyove- TO Be ocrov fierpov ocroif, ovft ei T<? 
vovv e^et TO \e<yeiv, &v p,r]Te Tivd dvdytcrjv ^T TOV eltcoTa 
15 \oyov teal fjL6Tpia)<; dv Tt? eiTreiv eirj SvvaTO?. epvOpbv 8e 8r) /j,e\avi 
\evtcw TG tcpaOev d\ovpyov op<j)vivov Be, oTav TOVTOI? /j,fj,iyfji,evoi<> C 
icavOelcri Te /j,d\\ov crvyKpaQfj /j,e\av. jrvppov Be av0ov Te teal 
<f>aiov tcpdcrei yiyveTai, <patov Be \evtcov Te teal peXavos, TO Be 

> Be Xevtcov 

Ka et9 peav tcaTatcopes ep,7recrv tcvavovv 

3 aOpoov post C5wp ponunt SZ. 10 rrj: avrri A. n (uyvvfttvov dedi cum S e 

Stephani correctione. fjLiyvv/jitvri AHZ. irapa.<rxpij.fvov scripsi. irapaffxof^vri 

AHSZ. 19 fjuyvv/j.tvov: fj.e/iuy/j.frov S. \evnov : \a/j.irpov A. 

moisture, an agitation of the eyes is pro- colour. Stallbaum, accepting (j.iyvv/J.ti'ov, 

duced which we call 'dazzling'. As re- oddly enough retains irapa.<yxptiAvri. 

gards irvp d6p6ov KM. vdwp, we must re- 13. TO Si ocrov (icrpov] To give the 

member that, as Martin remarks, Plato exact proportions of the mixture is beyond 

considered all liquid water, and especially the power of science and is not requi- 

of course warm water, to be a mixture of site Kara TOV eiKbra \6yov: cf. below, 

fire and water; cf. 59 D.- 68 n. 

8. TO 8i TOVTWV aS |iTavi] i.e. in- 16. op<f>vivov] This is probably a 

termediate between the fire producing very deep shade of violet : compare Aris- 

\evKov and that producing ar'iKfiov. totle tie coloribus ii 7y2 a 25 evTetvo/j^va 

10. TIQ 8i Sid TTJS vorCSos avyji] The ydp TTWS irpbs TO ^>cDs aXovpyts ?%et TO 

reading of the ms. cannot be construed. xpu/J-a' AdTToi>oj 5 TOV ^wros irpocr^dX- 

I think it is necessary to receive fuyvv- XOJTOS fo(j>ep6v, o KO\OV<TIV 6p<f>viov. The 

ftfrov and irapacrxonevov, agreeing with word occurs again in the same form in 

ytvos. The sense will then be, the rays chapter iv 794 b 5. See too Xenophon 

arriving at the eye, as their fire mingles Cyropaedia VI 1 1 iii 3 ouSti* <peid6/jLevos otire 

with the gleam pervading the moisture irop<f>vpiduv ore 6p<t>vii>ui> otfre <poiviidowv 

which is there (i.e. with the fire residing o^re Kapvicivuv (red -sauce-coloured) t/aa- 

in the eye itself), give it a blood-red Tltav. It seems to have been an expensive 

68 c] TIMAIO2. 251 

penetrates the visual stream quite up to the eyes, and forcibly 
displaces and decomposes the pores of the eyes themselves, 
draws from thence a combined body of fire and water, which 
we call a tear: and whereas this agent is itself fire, meeting 
the other from the opposite direction, and one fire leaps forth 
as lightning from the eyes, while the other enters in and is 
quenched in the moisture, all manner of colours arise in this 
commixture; and to the sensation we give the name of dazzling, 
and the agent which produces it we call bright and shining. A 
kind of fire which is intermediate between the two former, when 
it reaches the moisture of the eye and is mingled with it, but 
does not flash, produces a blood-like colour by the mixture of 
fire with the gleam of the moisture, and the name we give it 
is red. Bright combined with red and white makes yellow. In 
what proportion they are mingled, it were not reasonable to say, 
even if we knew; for there is neither any inevitable law nor any 
probable account thereof which we might properly declare. Red 
mingled with black and white becomes purple, which turns to 
dark violet when these ingredients are more burnt and a greater 
quantity of black is added. Chestnut arises from the mixture 
of yellow and grey, and grey from white and black : pale buff is 
from white mixed with yellow. When bright meets white and 
is steeped in intense black, a deep blue colour is the result; and 

tint much in vogue among people who being, as it were, saturated with as much 

dressed handsomely: cf. Athenaeus xn black as it can contain. This is a tech- 

50, where it appears to represent the nical term to express vividness of colour : 

colour of the midnight star-lit sky. As cf. Aristotle de coloribus v 795" 2 

regards a\ovpy6i>, it may be noted that ^ ofo TOV uypov /j.e\aii>o/j,ti>ov TO 

this is the same combination which is yiverai /caraxop^s iffxvpus /cat 

assigned by Demokritos to iroptpvpovv : KVO.VOVV xP'*H' a ] Dark blue. Uemo- 

Theophrastos de sensu 77 TO 8t irop<pv- kritos gives a different account: Theo- 

povv ^< \CVKOV Kal ptXavos Kal tpvffpov, phrastos /. /. TO Si KVO.VOVV <? l<ra.Ti8os 

ir\d<JTT)v (jitv notpav tx VTO * T0 " tyvOpov, (the blue colour obtained from woad) 

ptKpav 5 TOV /j.4\avos, futaT\v 5 TOV XtvKov. Kal wpiadovs. By y\avKov a. light blue is 

A summary of the opinions of Demokritos evidently meant. The elaborate distiuc- 

concerning colour is given in 73 78. lions of colour drawn in the present chap- 

17. irvppov St'J This is a bright red- ter certainly do not tend to support the 

dish brown, chestnut or auburn. <f>atov theory which has been put forward that the 

is a dusky grey: wxpo" an ochrcous yel- Greeks were deficient in the colour-sense: 

low or buff. indeed it is somewhat difficult to get a 

20. tls (w'Xav KaraKop^s] i.e. an in- sufficient number of English terms to 

tense, absolute black; the substance translate the Greek names. 



[68 C 

Kvavov oe \evKw Kepavvvpevov <y\avKov, jrvppov Be pA\avi irpd- 
cnov. rd Be d\\a airo rovrwv <T%eB6v Brj\a, als dv d(f>ofjuoiovfjLeva D 
/jui^ecrt, BiaaM^ot rov eiKora pvOov. el Be rt? rovriov epyw CTKO- 
7rovfj,vos ftacravov \ap(3dvoi, ro rfjs dvBpaJTTLVijs Kal Octets <t;crea>9 

5 r]<yvorjK(i)s av elr] Bid(j>opov, ori 0eo<> fjt,ev rd 7ro\\d els ev 
vvvai Kal Trdkiv e evos els TroXXa Bta\vet.v i/cavws e 
d/j,a Kal Svvaros, dvBpwTrwv Be ovBels ovSerepa TOVTMV iKavos ovre 
ecrrt vvv oi/V elcrauOis TTOT' ecrrat. ravra 8rj irdvra rore ravrrj E 
7re(j)VKoTa e dvdjKrjs 6 rov KaXkicrrov re Kal dpLcnov SrifAiovpyos 

10 ev rot? yvyvofMevois 7rape\,dfj,(3avev, rjviica rov avrdpKr] re Kal rov 
re\ea>rarov deov eyevva, ^pco/iez^o? pev rals Trepl ravra airiais 
virf) per ovcrais, ro Se ev reKraivofAevos ev irafft, rot? 'yiyvofievois 
O.UTO9. Bi6 Brj ^pr) &v alrlas e'lBrj Btopi^eaBai, ro fiev dvayKatov, 
TO Be deiov, Kal ro /j,ev delov ev aTracrt fyretv Krr]crew<$ eveKa evBai- 

15/^01/09 /Stou, Ka6' oaov rj/juwv r/ <f>v<ri<> evBe^erai, ro Be dvayKaiov GO A 
eiceivwv %aptv, \oyi6/j,evov, ee5? dvev rovrwv ov Bvvard avrd eKelva, 
efi ot? o-7rovBd%ofj,ev, pova Karavoelv ovB" av \a(3elv ovB' a'XX,co9 

16 \oyi$fj.ei>ov : \oyifridvovs SZ. 

development of that form through all the 
ramifications of its manifold appearances. 
Plato here probably has in view the 
problem of ?v Kal TroXXa as presented by 
the methodical investigation of physical 
phenomena; the tendency of his later 
thought was however to the conclusion 
that the problem is one which can only 
approximately be grasped by finite intelli- 
gence. Compare 83 C. 

n. alriais virr)perov<rais] cf. supra 
48 C, Phaedo 99 A, Politicus 281 D. 

'3* T ^ H 1 ^ avaYKatov, TO 8J Ociov] 
The distinction between the two sorts 
of causes is obvious enough. The 
dvayKaiov includes all the subsidiary 
causes, the physical forces and laws 
by means of which Nature carries on 
her work : the Belov is the final cause, 
the idea of TO {tiXriffTov as existing in 
absolute intelligence. The operation of 
dvdyKi) is to be studied either, as we were 
told at 59 C, for the sake of rational 
recreation, or more seriously, as we now 

6 t/cavwy: iKavos us SZ. 

i. iruppov 8i fxe'Xavi irpdo-iov] This 
certainly seems an exceedingly odd com- 
bination. wpdinov is bright green, or 
leek-colour ; and a mixture of chestnut 
and black appears very little likely to 
produce it. Aristotle more correctly 
classes green, along with red and violet, 
as a simple colour : see meteorologica III ii 
372 a 5 t<m 8t TCI xpw/iaTa TO.VTO. &irep 
/j.6va crxfSov ov fivvavrai Troteic ol ypa<f>fjr 
(via. yap avrol Kepavvvovfft, ro 5 0oi- 
VIKOVV KM. irpamvov /cat a\ovpyov ov yty- 
verai Kfpavvvfj.evov. rj 5^ Ipu ravr' Zx ei T 
X/sw/aara 1 TO 5 /xeTa|i> TOU <j>oivi.KoG Kal 
n-paaivov <paiverai TroXXaKis av66v. Ac- 
cording to Demokritos irpaffivov is K irop- 
<f>vpov Kal rrjs Iffdridos, -rj e'/c -x\(apov Kal 
irop<pvpofi5ovs : combinations which seem 
hardly better calculated than Plato's for 
producing the desired result. 

5. 0os ptv] God, says Plato, can 
detect in the multifarious diversity of 
particulars one single form underlying 
them all ; and again he can trace the 

69 A] TIM AIDS. 253 

deep blue mingled with white produces pale blue; and chestnut 
with black makes green. And for the remaining colours, it is 
pretty clear from the foregoing to what combinations we ought 
to assign them so as to preserve the probability of our account: 
but if a man endeavour to make practical trial of these theories 
he will prove himself ignorant of the difference between divine 
and human intelligence : that God has sufficient understanding 
and power to blend the many into one and again to resolve the 
one into many; but no man is able to do either of these, now or 
henceforth for ever. 

All these things being thus constituted by necessity, the 
creator of the most fair and perfect in the realm of becoming 
took them over, when he was generating the self-sufficing and 
most perfect god, using the forces in them as subservient causes, 
but himself working out the good in all things that come into 
being. Wherefore we must distinguish two kinds of causes, one 
of necessity and one of God: and the divine we must seek in all 
things for the sake of winning a happy life, so far as our nature 
admits of it; and the necessary for the sake of the divine, reflect- 
ing that without these we cannot apprehend by themselves the 
other truths, which are the object of our serious study, nor grasp 
them nor in any other way attain to them. 

learn, as a stepping-stone to the know- bring our story to a fitting close by set- 
ledge of the MOP. This passage con- ting forth how he thereafter fulfilled his 
tains the strongest expression which design. God found all matter without 
is to be found in Plato in favour of the form or law, obeying blind chance. He 
investigation of phenomena, when he inspired into it form and order and made 
says that it is necessary to study sub- it to be a single universe, a living creature 
sidiary causes as an aid to the study of containing within it all things else that 
the final cause. Particulars are nothing live. Of the divine he was himself the 
else but the form in which the ideas are maker ; but the creation of the mortal 
made manifest to our bodily senses ; there- he committed to his children. And they, 
fore the study of particulars, in its highest receiving from him the immortal essence, 
aspect, is the study of ideas. But the built for it a mortal body, bringing with 
sole value of this study lies in its bearing it all the passions that belong to the flesh, 
on the knowledge of the ideal world : And reason, which is immortal, they set 
the physical inquiry regarded as an end in the head : but they made to dwell 
in itself Plato estimates quite as low in with it two mortal forms of soul, which 
the Timaeus as in the Republic. they severed from the immortal by put- 
69 A 70 D, c. xxxi. Now therefore ting the neck to sunder them. And 
that we have completed our account since the mortal form was twofold, they 
of the accessory causes which God em- made the midriff for a wall to part the 
ployed in carrying out his end, let us two: and they set emotion in the heart, 

254 HAATHNOS [69 A 

XXXI. "Or' ovv S?) rd vvv ola reKrotriv r)fju,v v\r) Trapdicei- 
rat TO, rdov airiwv yevrj 8iv\acrfj,eva, e (Sv rov e7ri\onrov \6<yov 
Bel %vvv<j)av0T)vai, 7rd\iv eV dp^rjv e7rave\0a)fji,ev Bid /Spa^ecM, 
ra^y re elf ravrov tropev6wp,ev, oOev Bevpo d^iKOfieOa, Kal reXeu- 

5 rrjv rjBtj Ke<f>a\rjv re ra> p,v6<> Tret, putted a dp/j,6rrova-av eTTifleivai 15 
rot? 7Tp6<r0ev. (txTTrep ovv Kal KMT dp%d<j eXej$/7, ravra drd/crax; 
e^ovra 6 0eos ev etcdcrru) re avrw TT^OO? avro real rrpos d\\rj\a 
crvftfjierpias eveTroirjo'ev, ocra? re Kal airy Buvarov r^v dvdXoya Kal 
(rvfifierpa elvai. rore yap ovre rovrwv c<rov /XT) rv%r) rt /nerei^ev, 

10 ovre TO irapi'iTrav cvofidcrai rwv vvv 6vofj,a%ofAva>v dj;io\<ryov TJV 
ov&ev, olov Trvp Kal vBtop Kal ei n rwv aXXtfV* a\Xa Trdvra ravra 
Trpwrov SieKccrfArja-ev, eire^r CK rovrwv irav roSe ^vvecrrr/craro, (pov 
ev fcoa e%ov rd Trdvra ev avrm Ovrjrd dddvard re. Kal rwv p>ev 
8eia)V avros yiyverai Srjfjiiovpyos, rdSv Se dvrjrwv rrjv yeveaiv rots 

15 eavrov jevv^fMacn 8r)fj,tovpyeiv rrpoa-era^ev ol Be fjbifiovf^evoi, irapa- 
Xa/Sovre? dpxfiv ^u%^9 dOdvarov, ro fjierd rovro Ovijrov 
avrfj Trepieropvevcrav o^rjfjbd re rcav ro crwfia eSoaav, aXXo re et 

2 SivXafffifra : div\i<>a H et ex correctione, ut videtur, A. 
6 ravra: airra rd A. 13 fx ov T( * Tavra : ^ovra irdvra A. 

and appetite they chained in the belly. 3. eir' dpx^v tiravcXOwp-ev] We 

This they did that the nobler part should here resume our account, interrupted at 

hear the voice of the reason and pass its 47 E, of the operation of intelligence, 

commands through all the swift channels which now acts through the created gods 

of the blood, and so might aid it in sub- in the generation of human beings. At 

duing the rebellious swarm of lusts and the same time Plato fulfils the promise 

passions. And knowing that the heart, made in 61 D of expounding <rap/c6j icai 

excited by fear or passion, would leap ru>v irepi a-Apta ytveaw faxy* re o<rov 

and throb vehemently, they devised the ffvrfr&v. 

cool soft structure of the lungs for a 4. reXeuniv qBrj KC<j>oXi]v TC] Corn- 

cushion to soothe and sustain it in the pare Phaedrus 264 c d\\d r65e ye olp.a.1 

time of need. <re ipdvai dv, delv irdvra \6yov uairtp fyov 

r. V\TJ Trapo,KtTai] We have as- ffvvfffrdvai ffCifja. n exovra avrbv avrov, 

sorted our material by distinguishing the wore /j.^re &Kf<f>a\ov elvai p-fre avow, 

Oeia atria from the and by enu- ciXXd peaa re tx tt ' Ka ^ o.Kpa, irpeirovr 1 

merating the manifold forms of the latter. dXXiJXou Kal TQ 5X<p yeypa^neva : also 

The use of OX?; is of course purely meta- Politicus 277 B dXX' drex^wy 6 \6yos 

phorical, without any trace of the Aris- r)/juv wffirtp <pov TJ\V l-faOfv pev irepi- 

totelian sense. ypa<f>r)i> Hoiicev iKav&s l?X-v, rr)v 8^ olov 

i. 8ivXa(T|iva] I can find no au- rots (j>ap/j.dKois Kal Ty ffvyKpdffei rCiv XP W - 

thority for using 5iv\iff(>a, which Her- /tdrwi/ evdpyeiav OVK O7rei.\i)<pfrai ITU. 
mann keeps, in the sense here required. 6. KO.T' dpxis \'x&n] We have 

8iv\Letv is a late word signifying ' to here a brief reference to the statements 

filter '. in 30 A. 42 n 43 A. 

c] TIMAIO2. 255 

XXXI. Now therefore that the different kinds of causes lie 
ready sorted to our hand, like wood prepared for a carpenter, of 
which we must weave the web of our ensuing discourse, let us in 
brief speech return to the beginning and proceed once more to 
the spot whence we arrived at our present point; and so let us 
endeavour to add an end and a climax to our story conformable 
with what has gone before. 

As was said then at the beginning, when God found these 
things without order either in the relation of each thing to itself 
or of one to another, he introduced proportion among them, in 
as many kinds and ways as it was possible for them to be pro- 
portionate and harmonious. For at that time neither had they 
any proportion, except by mere chance, nor did any of the 
bodies that now are named by us deserve the name, such as fire 
and water and the other elements : but first he ordered all these, 
and then out of them wrought this universe, a single living crea- 
ture containing within itself all living creatures, mortal and 
immortal, that exist. And of the divine he himself was the 
creator; but the creation of mortals he delivered over to his own 
children to work out. And they, in imitation of him, having 
received from him the immortal principle of soul, fashioned 
round about her a mortal body and gave her all the body to 

?x VTa ] See note on 53 A. not have come to pass without the action 

As to the construction, the accusative of intelligence. Compare 53 I? txvrj ptv 

may he regarded as governed by the Hx oVTa O.VTWV OTTO. 

compound phrase ffvfj./j.erptas tveirol-r)- 12. Jwov v] cf. 300. 

<rev, as though Plato had written 1/1/77/3- 17. oxTl|Aa] Compare 44 E flx'/Mct 

/x6(7aro. We had a somewhat similar avrb TOVTO Kal eviroplav ZSotrav. The 

sentence in 37 D, T)^/>OS yap Kal vuKras notion of 6x>jna is not a vessel to contain 

Kal fj.T)vas Kal tviavrovs, OVK 6vras irplv the soul, but a means of her physical 

otipavbv ytvtcrOai, r6re &/j.a tKeivy 1-vvurra- locomotion.<$ TT}V ytveviv avruiv diXXo T cISos . .TO Oviyrov] The nature 

9. TOVTWV] sc. TWV ffvp.nerpi.Giv. of this BVIJTOV elSoj has been discussed 

10. OVTS r6 irapairav dvo(id<rai] An- in detail in my introduction to the 
other shaft aimed at Demokritos : had Phaedo : a brief statement therefore of 
fire and water received only just so much what I conceive it to mean may suffice 
form as they might owe to rvx^, they here. The division into Odov and Ovrjrov 
could not even have been worthy of the is obviously identical with the division 
names fire and water. The mere existence into \oyiariKov and a\oyov in the Re- 
of such definite forms as fire air earth public; and the subdivision of Ov^rov cor- 
and water, even apart from their harmoni- responds to the subdivision of SXoyov in 
sation into a single coherent K6o>tor, could that dialogue into OvpofiSts and 



[69 c- 

ev avra) ^1^779 TrpocrwteoSoiJiOvv TO Ovrjrov, Seivd teal dvayteala ev 
eavrw TraOijfjLara e%ov, jrpwrov fiev ijSovijv, fieyia-rov teateov Se\eap, D 
ejreira \vrras, dyaOdtv (frwyds, en S' av ddppos teal <j)6{3ov, d<jjpove 
%Vfj,/3oi>\(o, OvfAOV 8e 8v<nrapa/j,vOr)rov, eX-TTi'Sa 8' evTrapdycayov' 

5 alcrOrjcret, Se d\6<yw teal e'rri'^eiprjrf) rcavro^ epwn ^vjKepacrd^evoi 
ravra dva<yKaio>s TO OVIJTOV yevos %vvedecrav. teal Sid ravra &rj 
o-/36fj,evoi /jbiaiveiv TO Oetov, o rt (Mr) irdaa TJV dvdytcr), ^coplf eiceivov 
fcaroiiei%ovo~iv els aXXrjv rov crco/iaTO? oitcrjcriv TO Ovrjrov, Icr6p,ov E 
teal opov SioiKoSofjLrjo-avres rfjs re tee<f>a\fj<> teal rov emjaws, av- 

10 %eva ^era^v ridevre^, f iva eitj ^(opl^. ev Srj Tot? cmj0e(ri teal rw 
tca\ovfj,ev<i) Owpatct TO rrjs ^Irv^fjf 6vtjrov <yevo<> eveSovv, teal eirei^r) 
TO jjiev dfjieivov avrrjs, TO Se j^eipov e7T(pvKi, SioiKoSo[AOV(ri TO TOU . 
0a>pa/eos av tevros, Siopi^ovres olov yvvaite&v, rrjv Se dvSpoov %&)/3t9 70 A 
oiterjcriv, rds (frpevas Sid^pay/jia ei9 TO /juecrov avrwv nOevres. TO 

4 Ovfibv 84 : 6vpav re et mox e\irloa r' S. 5 aiffBr/ffei 84 : alcrd^fffi re SZ. 

vyKtpa<ranevoi ravra : %vyKepa<ra/j.evol r' avrd, facta post ?/>wrt interpunctione, SZ. 
12 {TTf(f>vKei: ire<pijKft. S. TO TOU OwpaKos aC : TO ToO (tupaxos avro A. Toy Oupaxos o5 
TO' SZ. 

and to the nobler and baser steed 
in the Phaedrus. It seems to me certain 
that these three etSrj are but names for 
one and the same vital force manifesting 
itself in different relations. The intellect, 
seated in the head, is the soul acting by 
herself, performing her own proper func- 
tion of thinking. But since she is brought 
into connexion with a material body, she 
must needs have irdBr) which are con- 
cerned with that body. So then, if 
the Oelov is her activity by herself, the 
Ovrtrov is her activity through the body ; 
which activity Plato distributes into two 
classes of vaBrj, one of which may 
be designated by the general term of 
emotions, the other by that of appetites. 
It will be noticed that this does not 
profess to give an exhaustive catalogue 
of the soul's activities through body : 
for sensuous perceptions are a mode of 
her action through body which does not 
fall under either head. For reasons in 
support of this view of the relation of 
the ftbr) I must refer to the introduction 
to the Phaedo aforesaid. The name 
Ovyrov is applied by Plato to the lower 

s, because, though soul is in herself and 
in her own activity eternal, her connexion 
with any particular body is temporary, 
and so must her action through such a 
body be also. Galen comments upon 
the term tfj^ToVas follows: de plac. Hipp. 
et Plat. IX 794 irbrepov xvpius dvo/j-afw 
etprjKev tv Tifj-aty Ovrjrd TO. dtio [atpy rrjs 
i/svXW 'n T^TIJV auTO?s tirriveyKf rr)i> Trpoarj- 
yopiav dOavarois ovffiv cis "Xfipoffi rov Xo- 
yicrriKou xa.1 ws Kara, rd Qvrfro. ruv ^ifiuv 
tvepyovffi /JLOVOV ; Of this question he offers 
no determination, but that he raised the 
point is interesting. 

i. Scivd Kal avavKcua] This and 
much more of the phraseology in the 
present passage is echoed from 42 A. 
dvayKdta = necessarily inherent in their 

3. a<J>pov vp|3ovXci>] Compare 
Laws 644 c, where pleasure and pain 
take the place of confidence and fear : 

tvavriu} re KO.I a.<ppove, w irpoffayopei'io/J.ei' 
rjSovrjv /cat \VTTTJV. 

6. T& OVTJTOV Y^VOS] sc. rrjs ifsvxffi- 

7. o-tf36|xevoi. p.iaiviv TO Octov] An- 

70 A] 



ride in; and beside her they built in another kind of soul, even 
that which is mortal, having within itself dread and inevitable 
passions first pleasure, the strongest allurement of evil, next 
pains, that scare good things away; confidence moreover and 
fear, a yoke of thoughtless counsellors ; wrath hard to assuage 
and hope that lightly leads astray; and having mingled all these 
perforce with reasonless sensation and love that ventures all 
things, so they fashioned the mortal soul. And for this cause, 
in awe of defiling the divine, so far as was not altogether neces- 
sary, they set the mortal kind to dwell apart from the other in 
another chamber of the body, having built an isthmus and 
boundary between the head and the breast, setting the neck 
between them to keep them apart. So in the breast, or the 
thorax as it is called, they confined the mortal kind of soul. 
And whereas one part of -it was nobler, the other baser, they 
built a party-wall across the hollow of the chest, as if they were 
marking off an apartment for women and another for men, and 
they put the midriff as a fence between them. That part of the 

other reason why the intellect should be 
in the head is given in 90 A. Galen de 
plac. Hipp, et Plat. VI 505 says that Hip- 
pokrates agreed with Plato in making 
three <i/>x<"' the head heart and liver : 
this view Galen himself defends against 
that of Aristotle and Theophrastos, who 
made the heart the sole dpxn ' cf. Aris- 
totle de iuvenlute iii 4^9* 5. See note on 
73 B ol yap rod fiiov 8f<r/j.oi rrjs t/'i'X'?s T<^ 

TO Qvryrov -y^os. 

& TI |MJ irdtra ifv dvaYKi]] A certain 
loss of her divine nature is inseparable 
from the soul's differentiation and con- 
sequent material embodiment : all the 
gods could do was to reduce this to a 

10. TU Ka\ov[Wvw Oiopaxi] The epi- 
thet KaXovju^v is inserted because the 
word &6pa in this sense is a technical 
term of anatomy, the popular word being 
yrtpvov or ffrrjOos. It occurs nowhere else 
in Plato, but is common in Aristotle, who 
sometimes, as de partibus animalium iv 

P. T. 

xii 693" 25, uses the same expression, rA 
TOV KaXov/jLfvov OupaKOS tirl TU>V Terpawo- 
5uv. Euripides has it once, Hercules furens 
1095 veaviav 6u>pa.Ka Kal j3paxiova. Aris- 
totle also uses the word in a more com- 
prehensive sense than it bears nowadays, 
including the entire trunk : historia atii~ 
malium \ vii 491* 29. 

13. olov ywaiKwv, njv Se avSpcov] 
This is no more than a mere simile : 
there is nothing in the words to warrant 
the titles which Martin bestows upon the 
two tttr) 1'ame male and Fame femelle ; 
nor is there the slightest appropriateness 
in these names. It is not even said which 
division corresponds to theyvvaiKuv, which 
to the dvSpuv otic-riffis. 

14. Sid<f>p<vypa] This word, which 
has since become specially appropriated 
to the midriff, is used in a general sense 
by Plato for a fence or partition : Aris- 
totle applies it to the cartilaginous wall 
dividing the nostrils, historia animalium 
I xi 492 h 16: the midriff he often calls 




[70 A 

[ier%ov ovv rfji "fyv^s dvSpeias Kal 6vp,ov, <f>t\6veiKov ov, KCLTW- 
Ki<rav eyyvrepco T//9 Ke<f>a\fjs /jLera^v rwv (frpevaiv re Kal av%evo<;, 
iva rov \6yov Karr)KOov ov tcouf) per e/ceivov ftiq TO TV emOvfjuwv 
Kare^oi, 76^09, OTTOT' eV r/?9 a/cp07roXert>9 rc3 erriTdy/jiaTi Kal \6ya> 
5 /J.r)Ba/mfj Treideaffat, e/cov 0\oi. rr)V 8e Sr; Kap&iav a/jL/j.a rdov <f)\e/3wv 
Kal Trrjyrjv TOV rrepifapofjievov Kara rrdvra rd fj,e\ / tj o-^>oSpo)9 at- B 
/iaro? ei9 TJ)I' Sopv<j>opiKi}v oiKr](Tiv KarecrTfjorav, Yva, ore Accrete TO 
TOU dvfjiov /tez/09, TO) \6jov 7rapayyi\avTO<t, 009 Tt9 aSi09 Trepl 
avra yijverai, Trpafys egwffev rj ical Tt9 airo rdov evSoOev 7ri0v/j,i(5v, 
10 o^6)9 Sta Trdvrojv TWV crrevatTToav irav '6<rov alcrOrjTiKOv ev rut 
(rcajjiaTi TWV re TrapaKeKevcrewv Kal d7rei\(uv alaOavopevov <yiyvoi- 
ro 7Tt]Koov Kal eTrotro Trdvrrj, Kal TO (3e\,ri<rrov ovrow ev avrols 
yyefjioveiv ec3. rg Be &r) ir^Sr/aec, rrjs Kap&ias ev rfj rwv C 
TrpocrBoKLa Kal rf) rod OV/JLOV eyepcrei, Trpoyiyvwa'Kovres ori 
15 Bid Trvpos 77 roiavrrj Trdcra e/j,e\\ev oiSrjcris yiyveadai rwv 6v- 
fj,ovfJievQ)v, eTrtKOvpiav avrfj firf^avwfjLevoi rrjv rod 7r\eu/*oyo9 ISeav 
evecfrvrevo-av, irpwrov pev fjLoXaKrjV Kal dvaipov, elra (rijpayyas 
%ovcrav olov (nroyyov Kararerpij/Jievas, iva TO re irvevp.a 

, dvairvorfv Kal pao~ru)vr]v ev rq> 

Ka TO TTOfjua 

I dvdpetas: avSpias AZ. 5 o/a/ua: 

13 t$ : {(fa S. 15 otdrjffis 

3. KaTijKoov] Undoubtedly this 
means 'within hearing of: that was the 
object they had in view when they placed 
the 6vfJi.oti$ts tyyvrtpta T^S Kf<pa\fjs. 

4. K TTJS (XKpoiroXews] Compare 
Galen de placitis Hippocratis et Platonis 

II 230 Ka.0a.irep Iv a.Kpoir6\fi TTJ ice(f>a.\rj 
dttcr)v fj.eya.Xov /3a(n\^ws o ^7/c^aXoj tdpv- 

5. apfia] This reading has best ms. 
authority and gives the best sense : Stall- 
baum's a.px'n" ^M a is comparatively feeble. 
It is true that Aristotle de iitventute iii 
468 b 31 has 17 6^ Kapdia on early apM r ^ v 
tp\efiu>v : but that is no evidence that 
Plato wrote opx 1 ?" here. Galen quotes 
this passage, de plac, II 292, and charges 
Chrysippos with plagiarising the Platonic 

6. <r|>o8p<<5s] From this word Galen 
de plac. VI 573 infers that Plato makes 
the heart the apxn of the arterial circula- 

10 TUV ante ffrevuiruv omittunt AS. 
19 ir6fj.a : irwp.a A pr. m. SZ. 


tion only, not of the venous, the 
of which is the liver; rk p.h yap <? 
^Varos 6pfj.w/j.evov ov vepi^perai ff<f>o8pus. 
This seems however a slight basis on 
which to found the inference that Plato 
knew the difference between veins and 
arteries, which he nowhere else gives any 
sign of distinguishing. Compare pseudo- 
Hippokrates de alimentis vol. II p. 22 
Kiihn pifacns 0\e/3<2j/ ffirap, p/fwais aprr]- 
piCiv KapSir), tic rovrtuv aTroirXavSLrai 
Kal irvevfji.a, Kal 6epna<rii>) dta 
<pcnT$ : the passage however has in it 
unmistakable marks of a date long sub- 
sequent to Plato's time or Aristotle's 
either. The distinction between veins 
and arteries seems also to have been un- 
known to Aristotle ; and unquestionably 
he makes the heart the only apxtf- 

g. TWV ?v8o0v !m6v|AwI>v] Compare 
the functions of the <f>v\aKe$ in protecting 
the city efre rts t%u6ev rj Kal rQiv evooOev 

c] TIMAIO2. 259 

soul which shares courage and anger, seeing that it is warlike, 
they planted nearer the head, between the midriff and the neck, 
that it might be within hearing of the reason and might join it 
in forcibly keeping down the tribe of lusts, when they would in 
no wise consent to obey the order and word of command from 
the citadel. And the heart, which is the knot of the veins and 
the fount of the blood which rushes vehemently through all the 
limbs, they made into the guardhouse, that whensoever the fury 
of anger boiled up at the message from the reason, that some 
unrighteous dealing is being wrought around them, either with- 
out, or, it may be, by the lusts within, swiftly through all the 
narrow channels all the sensitive power in the body might be 
aware of the admonitions and threats and be obedient to them 
and follow them altogether, and so permit the noblest part to be 
leader among them all. 

For the throbbing of the heart in the anticipation of danger 
or the excitement of wrath, since they foreknew that all such 
swelling of passion should come to pass by means of fire, they 
devised a plan of relief, and framed within us the structure of 
the lungs, which in the first place is soft and void of blood, and 
next is perforated within with cavities like those of a sponge, in 
order that receiving the breath and the drink it might cause 
coolness and give rest and relief in the burning. Wherefore 

tot KaKovpyriffuv 170. of the paramount importance of the lungs 

10. 8id irdvTwv TWV orcvttirwv] i.e. in the process of breathing and the purifi- 
through all the narrow blood-vessels ; to cation of the blood : he is also of course 
which, as we have seen, Plato attributed quite wrong in calling them avaifiov. His 
the functions which are really discharged view is impugned by Aristotle on grounds 
by the nerves. of comparative anatomy, de partibus ani- 

1 1. TWV T irapoKcXcwrccov Kal dim- malium III vi 669* 18 rb dt jrpAj TTJP S.\crii> 
Xwv] Cf. 718 x a ^ e7r ') TrpofffvtxOficra. flvai rbv irXevnova rrjs KapSias OVK ttpr)Tai 
diret\fj. TO ptXriffrov of course = TO \oyiff- /caXuij : further on, 66g b 8, he says 5\wj 
TIKOV. fj.ti> oiv 6 ir\(i/fjui>v tariv dvairvorjs x^P 1 " ' 

13. TTJ 8i 81] -inj8Tj<ri] The violent but he does not seem to have had a very 

beating of the heart under the influence clear idea of the functions performed by 

of strong emotion is due to its hot and the lungs. 

fiery composition. So the lungs, a soft 18. TO TC irvtvp.a Kal T ir6|ia] In 

and bloodless structure, were placed be- this curious error Plato is at one with all, 

side it, partly to cool it, partly to provide or nearly all, the best medical science of 

a soft cushion to receive its bounding. the day. Plutarch de Stoicorum repitg- 

Plato, as we shall see when we come to nantiis xxix says H\druv yv ?x T ^" 

his account of respiration, was unaware iarpuv robs tv8oordTovs (t.a.pTvpovi>Tas, 




[70 D 

v KCU r&v iroiijruv 'EvpiirLSrji', 

i' Bio Brj r/7<? dpTrjpias d^eroi)? eVt TOV -rrXevfiovd 1> 
Tefj,ov, KOI Trepl TTjv KdpBidv duTov Trepieo'Trjfrav olov a\fj.d p.a\a- 
KOV, 'iv o Ovfjios rjvitfd ev avTy d/cftd^ot, 7rr)B(5cra els VTreiKov KOI 
dvatyvyo/jievr), irovoixrd IJTTOV, fj,d\\ov TO> \6yy /Ltera 0vfiov Bv- 
5 VdiTO VTrrjpeTeiv. 

XXXII. To Be Br} aiTW T real TTOTWV eTriOvf^rjTiKov Trjs 
tywyfjs Kdl ccrwv evBeiav Bid Tt)v TOV trw/zaro? i^x i < f )VO ~ t >v, TOVTO 

6i9 T fATav TWV T <f>peVU>V Kttl TOV 7T/3O9 TOV OfJ,(f)d\.OV OpOV KdTO)- E 

Kio~av, olov (baTvriv ev arravTi TOVTW TU> TOTTW Tfj TOV cra)/j.aTo<i 
10 Tpo(pf) Te/cTijvdfjievoi' Kdl KdTeBrjcrav Brj TO TOIOVTOV evravOa eJ? 
dypioi', Tpe<j)eiv Be ^vvrjfi^evov avay/faiov, elirep TI /LteXXot 

LO. II. 7 OCTWC '. 030V Jl. 

piXwpias TOV dpydvov (pepo/jLtvov, dXXd wtpl 
TOI> x'Tw^a avTov Spoffotidws xaTapptov. 

1. Tijs aprt]p(os] i.e. the windpipe: 
later it was designated 17 Tpaxeia dpnjpla, ' 
whence trachea. This is the only usage 
of the word aprr/pla in Plato and Aristotle; 

it never means 'artery' in the modern 
sense. 6x TOVS is plural like dpTtjpias in 
78 c, probably because of the bifurcation 
of the trachea into the bronchia before 
entering the lungs. 

2. oXpa jtaXaKov] There is certainly 
no reason for altering the text : Plato 
might very well say 'a soft leap' for 'a 
soft place to leap upon '. Martin's dy/j.a 
is a very unhappy suggestion, and Her- 
mann's fj.d\ayfj.a is as inappropriate as 
arbitrary. fj.d\ayfj.a means a poultice or 
fomentation ; but the function of the lungs 
is distinctly stated just below, irr)duffa 
et $ vireiKov : this is perfectly well expressed 
by the received reading. I believe that 
Aristotle had this word fiX^ta in his mind, 
when he wrote fiX<rt$ in the passage from 
de partibus aninialium quoted above. 
The object of the lungs then, according 
to Plato, is to quiet down the agitation 
of the heart and thereby render the emo- 
tional faculty capable of taking sides with 
the reason against the eiriOvuriTiKov. 

4. jtcrd Ovjioii] i.e. that the heart, 
along with the emotional faculty seated 
therein, may be enabled to obey the 


STI TO WOTOV 5t& TOV Tri>fv(j,ovos ddeiai. 
It is remarkable that Galen also held 
this view: cf. de plac. Hipp, ct Plat. Vlll 
719 aXXa el Kal <fov, o TI &v e^eX^crr;?, 
Si\f/r t ffai Tronjo'ets, wy Kfxpvff/J-&oi> vSup 
jrtetV, et doirjs eifre Kvavip xpw- 
as efre /i/Xry, elro eu^e'ws <r0d|as 
dvartfjiois, fvpriffeis Kf^puff^vov TJV irvtv- 
fiova. dfj\ov oZv tffTiv STI <p{peTal TI TOV 
5r6yLtaros e/s O.VTOV. Galen's observation 
is, I believe, correct, though his inference 
is not so. Aristotle, on the contrary, was 
aware that no fluid passes down the wind- 
pipe to the lungs : see historia aninialium 
I xvi 495 b 16 TI JJLV otv dpTijpia TOVTOV 
#X TOV Tpbirov, Kcd 5^x era ' f^ovov TO irvev- 
(jia. /cat a^irjcriv, aAXo 5' ovOtv ovTe t-rfpov 
oCO' vypbv, rj irovov irap^x fl > ^ ws *" fK^i)^ 
TO Ka.Tf\06v. See too de partibits aninia- 
lium ill iii 664 b 9, where he gives divers 
demonstrations that the hypothesis is 
untenable. It is also denied by the 
writer of book IV of the Hippokratean 
treatise de morbis, vol. II pp. 373, 374 
Kiihn : but affirmed by the author of dt 
ossium nafura, a work of uncertain date, 
vol. I p. 515 Kiihn. Galen de plac. Vlll 
715 points out that Plato conceives only 
a part of the fluid to pass down the 
trachea : OVK dOpoov ovSt Sid /u&r^j rijs ev- 



they made the windpipe for a channel to the lungs, which they 
set around the heart, as it were a soft cushion to spring upon ; 
so that when wrath was at its height therein, the heart might 
leap upon a yielding substance and become cooled, and thus 
being less distressed it might together with the emotions be 
better enabled to obey the reason. 

XXXII. But that part of the soul which lusts after meat 
and drink and all things whereof it has need owing to the 
body's nature, this they set between the midriff and the navel 
as its boundary, constructing in all this region as it were a 
manger for the sustenance of the body : and here they chained 
it like a wild beast, which must yet be reared in conjunction 
with the rest, if a mortal race were to be at all. To the end 

reason : that is to say, that the emotional 
faculty may not be hampered m its 
action by the physical agitation of the 
organ which it employs. From first to 
last, in this dialogue as in the Republic, 
Plato regards the emotions, if they are 
given fair play, as sure allies of the 

70 D 72 D, c. xxxii. But that part of 
the soul whereunto belongs the craving 
for meat and drink the gods placed in 
the belly, where they made, as it were, 
its stall: and so they kept it far away 
from the habitation of the intellect, that 
it might cause the least disquietude. And 
since they knew that it could not appre- 
hend reason, but would be led by dreams 
and visions of the night, they devised for 
it the liver, which should copy off for it 
all the messages from the brain ; either 
terrifying it by threats and pains and 
sickness, or soothing it by visions of 
peace. Here then they set up the ora- 
cular shrine in the body of man: and 
since the appetitive soul could not di- 
rectly comprehend the precepts of rea- 
son, they thought to guide it by signs and 
tokens and dreams which might be com- 
prehended of it. A proof that divination 
is a boon for human folly is this. No sane 
man in his waking senses is a true seer: 
only one that is asleep or delirious or in 

some way beside himself has this gift. 
The part of the sane man is to interpret 
the prophetic utterances of the distraught 
seer, for that the prophet cannot do. 
Whence the seer always has an inter- 
preter to expound his sayings ; who often, 
but wrongly, is himself termed a seer. 
So then the liver is the seat of prophecy : 
but it has this virtue only during life : 
after death it is blind. 

Next to the liver is placed the spleen, 
which is as a sponge to purify it and 
carry off noxious humours. 

7. 8i& TTJV TOV o-wjxaros fo"X l 4>v- 
<rtv] This clearly teaches that it is for 
the sake of the body alone that the ap- 
petitive soul desires meat and drink ; for 
itself it needs no such thing. The in- 
ference thence is that the iri0vfjii)TiKl>i> 
detached from the body is just pure soul, 
the one and only soul ; but i/na tin6v- 
uriTtKbv it is considered as working through 
and for the body, the nourishment of 
which it has to superintend. 

9. olov 4>d.TVT)v] This suggests a horse 
as the similitude, rather than a wild beast : 
compare Phaedrus 247 E. 

10. <is 6pfy.[i dfypiov] Compare Re- 
public 588 C foil. 

1 1. tirtp TI jjAXoi] If a mortal crea- 
ture is to be, it must have a body; the 
body must be animated and sustained by 



[70 E- 

TO 0vr)Tov (reo~0ai yevos. iV ovv del vefiofievov Trpo? (frdTvy Kal 

O Tl TTOppWTaTO) TOV j3oV\VOfJ,VOV KaTOlKOVV, ObpvftoV Kal fiorjV 

to? eXaxiGTijv 7rape%ov, TO KpaTurTov KaO' ^crv^iav Trepl TOU Trdai 71 A 
Koivy u/i<epoi>TO? ec3 ^ou\evecrdai, Sid TavTa evTav6 e8o<rav 

5 avTfp Trjv Ta^tv. elBoTe's Be avro, to? XOYOU fiev otrre %vvr/a-eiv 
/j,e\\ev, et TG. Try Kal fjLTa\a/ji^dvoi Ttvo? avTwv al&Orjcrea)*;, OVK 
e/A^VTov avTw TO fjt,e\etv TLVWV eaoiTo \6ya)V, VTTO Be elBwXwv Kal 
i/f/cTO? T6 Kal fjieO* r/fj^epav f^dXia'Ta ylrv^aywyij- 
>/} ^eo? 7n,f3ov\evo~a<; avTw TTJV r/TraTo? IBeav %vve- 

10 cTTirja-e Kal eOrjKev ei? TTJV CKCLVOV KaToiKrjaiv, TTVKVOV Kal \elov B 
Kal \a/j.7rpov Kal >y\VKV Kal TTiKpOTrjTa e%ov fjLr]^avrio'dfjLi>o<;, "va 
ev avTO) TWV Biavorjfidrwv rj eK TOV vov ^tepopevrj Bvva{j,is, olov ev 

I TO Ovrjrov '. iroTe 6vi)Tov S. 6 avTaiv alcrOriffeus : aC TUI> alffdriaewv SZ. 

soul; hence there must be an tin 
K&V, or, as Aristotle would say, a 
Kbv elSos of soul. For, as has been said, 
the differentiation of souls into individuals 
involves materialisation and hence imper- 

5. OVT ^w^a-tiv 2|iX\tv] The lowest 
elSos would not have any comprehension 
of rational principles, or if haply it had 
some inkling of them, it would not care 
to pay any heed to them. Therefore they 
are expressed to this faculty in simili- 
tudes by means of the liver. It will be 
noticed that this symbolical representa- 
tion of the dictates of the individual 
reason is exactly analogous to the sym- 
bolical manifestation of the ideas of uni- 
versal reason by means of the sensible 
perception of particular objects. 

6. avrwv] This is doubtless right, 
referring to the TIVWV \6ywv which fol- 
lows. Stallbaurn's reading is, as I think, 
weak in sense. 

8. teal |M0' T^e'pav] The phantasms 
of the daytime are the perceptions of the 

IO. TI^V tKlivOV KaToClCTJ<riv] SC. T1)V 

TOV twtffvfafnxev. In his account of the 
relations of the liver with the eiridv/j.r)Tt- 
KOV Plato has by anticipation refined be- 
yond the point made by Aristotle in nic. 
et/i. I xiii iiO2 b 23 foil, faus 5' otiev 

ffTTov Kal ev TTJ ifsvxrj VO/JLKTT^OV eival TI 
irapa TOV \6yov, eva.vrioiJtJi.evov roi/ry Kal 
avTifialvov. TTUJS 5' erepov, ovSev Siafapei. 
\oyov 8 Kal TOVTO <j>alvf.rai ^er^x e "' & ff - 
vep eiTro/aev' ireiOapxet yap r<j) \oyif rb 
TOU eyKparovs. ?Tt S' ferws e{ir)Kotbrep6v 
iffTi TO TOW ffJxppovo? Kal dvSpelov' irdvra 
yap bfJ.o<f)<j)vei T \6y(f. (fiatverai ST) /cat 
TO aXoyov OLTTW. TO fJ.ev yap tpiTtKov ov- 
5a/ Koivwvel \6yov, TO 
Kal 5Xws 6peKTiKov JHCT^X" 
KOOV e<TTiv avTov Kal ireiffapxi-Kov. oOrw 
dr) TOV iraTpos Kal TUV <pl\uv <f>auev ?x et|/ 
XOYOJ', Kal oi>x uffwep TUV /jLadrjfiaTtKtcv. 
Sri d irelOeTai TTWJ inro TOV Xo-you TO dXo- 
yov, (Ji.r)vvet Kal ij vovde"Ti)o~is Kal iraffa eiri- 
Ti/J.r)ffis Kal Trapd.K\rio'a. el de XP*I Ka ^ 
TOVTO <f>dvai \6yov %xeiv, SITTOV fo~Ti Kal 
TO \6yov fx"> T0 P^ v Kvplws Kal ev avrtp, 
TO 8 uffirep TOV iraTpos d/cowTt/cbV TI. In 
Aristotle's analysis then the rational part 
is twofold, the one kind possessing reason 
absolutely, the other listening to its be- 
hests. The aXoyov also is twofold, one 
kind being absolutely irrational, while 
the other /*eT^xet irrj \6yov. It thus ap- 
pears that the lower kind of X670P txp 
is identical with the higher kind of aXo- 
yov: that in fact they are the same thing 
viewed in different aspects. Comparing 
this with Plato's statement, we shall find 
that Aristotle's aXo-yo^ nerexov T"Q \6yov 

71 B] 



then that always feeding at its stall and dwelling as far as 
possible from the seat of counsel, it might produce the least 
possible tumult and uproar and allow the noblest part to con- 
sult in peace for the common weal, here they assigned it its 
place. And knowing that it would have no comprehension of 
reason, and that even if it did in some way gain any perception 
of rational thoughts, it was not in its nature to take heed to 
any such things, but that it would be entirely led away by 
images and shadows both by night and by day, God devised as 
a remedy for this the nature of the liver, which he constructed 
and set in its dwelling place : and he made it a body dense and 
smooth and bright and sweet with a share of bitterness. This 
he did to the end that the influence of thoughts proceeding 

occupies the same position as Plato's Ov- 
/j,ofi8s KarriKoov rov \6yov. This directly 
hears and obeys the dictates of reason. 
If a man is betrayed by his friend, the 
declaration by the reason that such con- 
duct is immoral is at once responded to 
by the Ovpofiits with a surge of indig- 
nation against the friend's baseness. But 
no such response would come from the 
firi6u/j.ijTiK6i', which is incapable of under- 
standing the situation. The judgments 
of the reason must therefore be conveyed 
to it in the symbolic form which alone 
appeals to it, by signs and visions, by 
portents and presages and terrors. This 
indirect communication has no place in 
the statement of Aristotle, who would no 
doubt denounce it as TrXaer/uoTwSe s. It must 
of course not be forgotten that Aristotle's 
iri6u/j.i)TiK6v is not the same as Plato's. 

A point worth noticing is a certain ad- 
vance in the psychology of the Timaeus 
as compared with that of the Phaedrus. 
In the latter the lowest elSos is simply 
appetitive ; but in the Timaeus it in- 
cludes the functions of nutrition and 
growth. This is plain from 70 E olov 
<f>a.Tvr)i> K.T.X. ; and also from the fact 
that the rplrov el<5os is assigned to plants. 
Aristotle then is in reality indebted to 
Plato for his OpeirriKbv /cal QVTIKOV: though 
it must be confessed that the debt is by 

no means acknowledged. 

n. iva (v a.vr*p] As this long sen- 
tence is very involved, a few words about 
the construction may not be amiss. The 
optatives belonging to iva are <t>oj3oi (the 
temporal clause after oirore extending as 
far as irapexoi) and the second TTOIOC : 
while to oirore belong tftfabvt, the first 
Troto?, and irap^xoi ; and to ore belongs 
diro<j}ypa.<fjol only. The after <f>o/3oi 
ought to have been answered by a 3^, 
when the soothing influence was first 
mentioned, but the length and intricacy 
of the sentence has interrupted the exact 
correspondence, so that the second mem- 
ber is introduced by na.1 instead of 5^. 
Again, it is not at first sight obvious, 
especially as the sentence is sometimes 
punctuated, to see where the apodosis to 
ST' o5 begins. I should without hesi- 
tation, putting a comma after djreu0<5- 
vovaa, make the beginning of the apodo- 
sis at tXediv re : though, if we took the 
participles vap^x ovffa - ar >d the rest in 
agreement with SiVajiuj instead of eir/- 
TTVOICL, it would be possible to begin the 
apodosis at TTJS jri/rporrjros. But the 
former view seems to me in every way 
preferable, ev avrf is anticipative of the 
clause beginning olov tv Karovrptf, from 
which we must supply the notion 'pro- 
ducing reflections in it'. 




TVTTOVS teal KariBelv eiBo)\a Trape^oi'Ti, </>o/3ot 

yu.ei> avro, O7TOT6 fAepei T/y9 TTtKpOTrjTOS ^pojfjLevr) %vyyevei, ^aXeTr/} 
cnreiXf), Kara irdv VTrofjLtjvvcra oea>? TO rjirap, 
epfyaivoi, ^vvdyovad re TTCLV pvaov teal rpa^v 
5 TTOtol, XoySoy e /cat 0^09 7ru\a9 re, ra /iJ> e' opdov Karatd/jur- C 
rovaa Kal ^vcnruxja, rd Be efi^paTTOvaa <7vyK\eioL>crd re, Xi/7ra9 
/cat ao~a9 7rape%ot' fcal or' ay rdvavria ^tavrdafjiara diro^wypafyol 

7T/9aOT?7TO<? Tt? 6/C BldVOiaS eTTLTTVOia, T/79 /i6V TTLKpOTtJTOS r]<JV\laV 

7rap%ova'a ru> fjbrjre Kiveiv fjujre irpoardTTTecrdai, rrjf eVai/ria? eavrt) 

Be r/J ;ar' eKelvo ^vp-fyv-rw Trpos avro 
6p0d real \eia avrov /cat e\ev6epa d-rrevOv- D 
vova~a, tXeaiv re Kal evr/pepov iroiol rr)i> Trepl TO rfTrap ^fX'}? 
polpav KaTWKLcrp^evriv, ev re rfj vvKrl Biayaiyrjv e^ovcrav /jLerpiav, 
IMavreia %pa)fAevr)v icad' VTTVOV, eVetS/} \6yov Kal <^poi///'o-eo)9 ov 
15 yiteTet^e. /j.e/jLVT}/j,evoi yap rfj^ TOV Trarpo? eVto-ToX^? ol ^vffrr^ffavre^ 
, oT6 TO 6i>r)Tov eVecrTeXXe 76^09 069 apia-rov et9 tvvajMiv Trotelv, 

5 re: ro 


10 O.VTO : eavro A. 

t T7]S 1Tt-KpTT)TOS 

Stallbaum understands ry 
TJTTO.TL after tri/yye^e?, saying ' ridicule 
enim quidam sic interpretantur, ac si 
rationis naturae cognatum intelligatur'. 
It appears to me that the 'ridiculous' 
interpretation is the only correct one: 
vyyevet signifies, akin to the dark and 
gloomy nature of the thoughts which are 
conveyed by i) etc rov vov <pfpofj^vrj 5v- : see below /ttijre Trpoffdirreffffai rrjs 
tvavria.? favrr) Qvveus eOe\ttv. If the 
bitterness belonging to the liver is of a 
contrary nature to cheerful thoughts, it 
can hardly be very ridiculous to conceive 
that it is of kindred nature to thoughts 
that are gloomy. So Wagner, ' was seiner 
Natur (d. i. des Nachdenkens) entgegen- 
gesetzt ist '. 

3. dirtiXrj] Hermann punctuates so 
as to join this word with KO.TO. irav viro- 
piyvuffa K.T.A., which surely gives it an 
intolerable situation. Cf. 70 B. 

5. XofJov 8i Kal So\ds irvXas ft] The 
Xo/36s here meant is the lobe /car' t^ox'nv, 
the large right lobe of the liver, in which 
the gall-bladder is situated; to which 

15 i-vffTf]<rcn>Tes: ZwHTTavTes HS. 

effect Stallbaum cites Rufus Ephesius : the 
5oxu seem to be the small vessels in the 
liver: the wu\ai are the two entrances of 
the portal vein, which conveys blood to 
the liver; the plural is used because the 
vein divides into two branches immedi- 
ately before entering the liver. That all 
these were of high importance in sacri- 
ficial divination is clear from Euripides 
Electro. 827829: 

cai \o^36j pv ov irpoffrfv 
ffirXdyxvois, irv\a.i $t Ka 

fcafca? <-<j>a.ivov ry ffKOirovvri irpcff^o\ax. 
Compare Aristotle historia animaliiini 
I xvii 496 b 29 irpoffirtyvKe 5^ r-g /j.fyd\ri 
<p\f{3i rb riirap, TTJ 8' dopry ov noivuvei' 
did yap TOU TJiraros 5i^x fl ^ e * 7r ' 1 '"'7* fJ-fyd- 
\i]S <p\f[3bs <)>\{\l/, 3 5J; al KaXovnevat irv\ai 
flffl TOV ijiraros. The fj.cyd\r] <(t\t\(/ is 
evidently the vena cava; see de partibtis 
animalium III iv 666 b 24 on 5t wp&rov 
tv ry Kapdiq. ylreTai TO alpa iro\\aKis tipj)- 
Ka/j,ev, did Tb TCLS dpxrjyous 0\^/3as vo 
f'vat, TT\V re fj.eyd\t)v Ka\ovfj.tvt)i> Kal TTJV 
dopTriv while -q diro Trft /teyd\7jj is as 
clearly the portal vein. 

D] TJMA1O2. 

from the brain, when the liver received outlines of them, as if in 
a mirror, and exhibited reflections to view, might strike terror 
into the appetitive part, whenever making use of the bitter 
element akin to its own dark nature and threatening with stern 
approach, diffusing the bitterness swiftly throughout the whole 
liver it displayed a bilious colour, and contracting it made it 
all rough and wrinkled, and reaching the lobe and the vessels 
and the inlet, twisted the first from its right position and con- 
torted it, while at the same time it obstructed and closed up the 
two latter, thereby producing pain and nausea : and on the 
other hand in order that, whenever a breath of mildness from 
the reason copied off on the liver visions of an opposite kind, 
giving relief from the bitterness, because it will not excite a 
nature opposite to its own nor have dealing with it, but using 
upon the liver the sweetness that exists therein and soothing 
everything till all is straight and smooth and free, it might 
render gentle and calm that part of the soul which is settled 
about the liver, and might enable it to secure a sober amuse- 
ment at night, enjoying divination during sleep, in recompense 
for its deprivation of intelligence and wisdom. For our creators, 
because they remembered the behest of their father, when he 
commanded them to make the mortal race as perfect as they 

TO. jxiv] I suspect rbv /J.EV to be the CU'TO to refer to the tiri6vfi.-riTiKt>v : but this 

right reading. will not do. For avrb must surely have 

6. Xviras teal aaas] The effect is partly the same reference as avrov, which neces- 

phyaical, partly moral: the pains and sarily means rov ijiraros. 

nausea would cause evil dreams, which 12. t\wv rt Kal cvrjpcpov iroiot] Aris- 

served as portents and deterrents. Her- totle (who must have been rather mysti- 

mann, presumably by a typographical fied by this passage) has a direct reference 

error, puts no stop at all after iraptyoi. to these words in de partibus animalinm 

8. irpaoTT)T<5s Tis...tirirvoia] With IV ii 6j6 b 22 didirep ol \4yovres r^v Qfoiv 

this very striking expression compare the T^S ^o\jjs alff6-/i<rfws TIVOS that xapt.v ov 

beautiful phrase in Aeschylus Agamemnon KaXws \4yovaiv. <pa<rl yap thai Sta TOVTO, 

740 (ppovrjiLa. vyvt/jLov yaXavas. 4iriiri>ota SJTWS rijs if'vxw T& irepl rb rjirap fj.6piov 

is the regulaV word for divine inspiration : SdKvoucra nlv ffwiffry, \v6fj.fvov 5' t\tui> 

cf. Phaedrus 265 B, Laws 811 c. TOIT). Aristotle is himself decidedly 

10. y^ VK " TT l TI ' "Hi tar' ^KCIVO] sc. rb sceptical concerning the prophetic charac- 

Jj-n-ap: the tiriwoia. uses upon the liver ter of dreams: see his exceedingly in- 

(Trpds avrb) the sweetness which per- teresting treatise de divinatione. 

meates it. ZVH^VTV, i.e. akin to the 13. Iv rt rfj wic-rC] The re merely 

(iritrvoia. Stallbaum understands irpbt couples < r x ow '' a *' with tXeaurt KO\ einjufpov. 

266 EAATHNOS [71 D 

Brj Karopdovvres ical TO <f>av\ov r)fj,(av, 'iva dXrjffeias Try E 

KaTo~Tr)crav ev TOVTW TO pavTeiov. IKCLVOV Be 0-77- 
, et$9 (JiavTiKTJv d^poavvrj 6eo<> dvOpwTrivrj BeBajKev' ovSels yap 
eWoi/9 e<f>d7TTTai /AavTiKrjs evdeov KOI d\rj0ovs, aXX' 17 icaO' VTCVOV 
5 Trjv r^9 (frpovrjcrews 7reBr)0el$ Bvva/J,iv rj Bid voo~ov rj Bid Ttva ei 6ov- 
(riao~fj,ov 7rapa\\d^a<j. aXXa uvvorjo~ai fj,ev eu<ppovo<; r re prjOevTa 
dvauvr)o~6evTa ovap rj virap VTTO rr;9 i-tavTiicrjs re KOI evBovcriaa'- 
Tiicfj<> 0i/<retw9, Kal ocra av (fravTdcrjjLaTa o<f>df), TTCLVTCI Xoyicrftq) 72 A 
Bie\e<r0ai, OTTTJ TI arnnaivzi Kal OTW /ieXXoi/ro? */ 7rape\66vTo<; rj 
10 TrapovTOS Katcov rj dyaBov' TOV Be pavevTOS eri re eV TOUTS) pevov- 
T09 OVK epyov TO, (fravevTa Kal fywvrjOevTa v(f> eavTov Kpivetv, aXX' ev 
Kal TrdXat, \eyTat TO TrpaTTeiv Kal yvuivai TCL re avTov Kal eavTov 
o-(a<f>povi fjicvw trpoo-rjKeiv. '66ev Brj Kal TO TWV TrpotfrrjTwv yevos eVt 
ra.i9 evQtois jjiavTelais Kpnus i-niKaQ LOT aval vop.o<>' 01)9 /iayret9 B 
15 avTOVS ovofJbd^ovcyL Tires, TO Tfdv r}yvor)KOT<>, OTI Trjs Bt au'iyfj,a)i> 
OVTOL <f)ijfjir)<$ Kal ^>ai'Tacr&)9 vTTOKpiTai, Kal oi> TI pdvTeis, 7rpo(f)fJTai Be 
/j,avTevo/j,eva)v BiKaioraTa ovof^d^oivT dv. rj /jiev ovv <f>vo-is rj 
Bid TavTa ToiavTij re Kal ev TOTTW u> \eyo/j,ev 7re<f)VK, "fc 

' Kal ert ftv Bij ^WVTOS e/catrrou TO TOIOVTOV ar^ela evap- 

8 <j>avTa<rfj.a.Ta: <paff/j.a.Ta SZ. 17 T^Traros : TOV ijtraros S. 

ig tvapytffTepa. : tvfpy^oTepa A. 

3. cl.4>poo-{ivT) 66s av0pTr{v[] SeSwKtv] /Spax^a ^ ovdtv. Presently follows the 

The keen irony pervading the whole of well-known derivation of fj.aviicrj from 

this very curious and interesting passage fjunvrtKy. The most remarkable passage 

is too evident to escape notice. Plato is at 244 D: dXXd ^v v6<rwv ye Kal irovuv 

had no high opinion of /xavrixr; and fjuiv- TV /jieyiffTtav, < 5^ TraXattDv IK fjL7jvifj.a.Tuv 

reis: the (JLO.VTIK&S ^3ios comes low in order irodtv ?v run. TUV yevuv, rj fiavia tyyevo- 

of merit in Phacdnis 248 E. See too the )j.ivr\ KOI irpo<f>TjTevffa.<ra olsZSti, d.ira\\ayT)i> 

contemptuous reference to dytiprai Kal evpero, KaraQvyovaa. irpbs Oeuf evx&s TC 

yua^retj in Republic 364 B, and Symposium KO.I Xarpe/as, &0tv dy re KO.I re\e- 

203 A xal TTJP fj.avreiav irdffav Kal 7017- TO>V Tvxovva ti;dvTi) firoiriffe TOV eavrTJs 

reiav. In Politicus 290 D he says with ?x" Ta i"/>o's re TOV irapovTO, Kal TOV jmra 

similar irony rb yap Srj TWV ieptuv <rx^M* XP^ VOV > ^vffiv T opdCis fiavlvTi Kal /cara- 

Kal r6 TUV /j.avT^wv e3 fj.d\a (ppovrjuaTos ffx.ofj.tvtf TUV vapovTUV KUKWV tvpofJilvri : 

Tr\Tr)povTai Kal d6av ffe/]v \a/j.[3dvei Sia where see Thompson's note. 
TO ptytOos T&V ^YxeipTjyuaTWP : but for all 6. irapaXXaJjas] For this sense of 

their assumption, they practise but a the word see above, 27 c el /XT; iravrdirafft 

'servile art', ejrwn}/*i;j diaKovov fiopiov. Tra/DaXXdYro/xei', and Euripides Hippolytus 

oiiSds yap ?vvovs] Compare Phacdrus 935 \oyoi irapaXXdffffovTfs l^eSpoi tfrpevCiv. 
244 A 17 Te yap d-f) tv AeX<#>o?j vpo<pij- 7. dvajiv^o-O^vra] sc. viro TOV fytppo- 

rtj al r' ev AwSwv?? lepeiai p.aveiaai (lev vos : .the order of words is somewhat 

TroXXd 5i) Kal Ka\a Idla re Kal dtjuoffia peculiar. 
rrpt 'EXXdSa elpydffavro, ff<ii<ppo,vovoai. be 13. ri TWV irpo^tirwy Y^vos] The 

72 B] TIMAIO2. 267 

were able, in this wise redeeming even the baser part of us, 
that it might have in some way a hold on the truth, placed in 
this region the seat of divination. 

Now that divination is the gift of God to human folly, this is 
a sufficient proof. No man in his sound senses deals in true 
and inspired divination, but when the power of his under- 
standing is fettered in sleep or by sickness, or if he has become 
distraught by some divine possession. The part of the sane 
man is to remember and interpret all things that are declared, 
dreaming or waking, by the prophetic and inspired nature ; and 
whatsoever visions are beheld by the seer, to determine by 
reason in what way and to whom they betoken good or ill in 
the future or the present or the past : but it is not for him who 
has become mad and still is in that state to judge his own 
visions and utterances ; the old saying remains true, that only 
for the sane man is it meet to act and to be the judge of his 
own actions and of himself. Whence has arisen the custom .of 
setting up interpreters as judges of inspired prophecy : these are 
themselves called prophets by some who are altogether un- 
aware that they are but the expounders of mystic speech and 
visions, and ought not in strict accuracy to be called prophets, 
but interpreters of the prophecies. 

Such is the nature of the liver and its situation that we 
have described, for the purpose of prophecy as aforesaid. And 
while each body has life, this organ displays the signs clearly 

function of the vpcxfirjTai is well illustrated 16. 08 TI pavrcis irpo^TJTCu 8f] It 

by Euripides Ion 413 416: must be confessed that Plato is himself 

SOT. &TTaiToS'- dXXd ris Tr/xx^retfet 0eoO; guilty of a converse error, when in 

ION. V e <* rd y' w, TWI> iffu 5 ? dtXXois Phaedrus 244 B he applies the term irpo- 

jtAet 0?;Tts to the Pythian priestess. This how- 

ol ir\r)<rloi> 6aff<Tov<Ti rpliroSos, <L ever is venial ; for the Pythia may be re- 

6/e, garded as the wpo<pTjris of Apollo, whereas 

AeXi^uJj' et/)iOT?;s ouj ^/cX^pwcrev her irpo<j>jJTa.i are in no sense navreis. 

iniXos. 18. x&P tv H-O.VTIKTJS] Plato does not 

This points to the existence at Delphi of altogether ignore the physiological func- 

two classes of irpo^rai : one class, to tions of the liver, as may be seen from the 

which only high-born Delphians were important part played by x o ^> when this 

admitted, heard the inspired utterances secretion is in a morbid condition, in his 

of the Pythia herself; the other and pathology. But he characteristically 

less exclusive class having to declare what- gives chief prominence to the final cause, 

ever was to be made known to the public which is to redeem the tiriOvfi.rjTiKoi' from 

without. complete irrationality. 


[72 B- 

%(, arepyOtv Be rov %rjv yeyove ru<f)\ov Kal rd pavreta 
dfj,vBporepa eo"%e rov rt craves crr)/j,aiveiv. rj 6 av rov yeirovos c 
avrq> jfvcrracris Kal eSpa cr7T\dy^vov yeyovev el; dpicrrepds 
etcelvov, rov rrape^etv avro \afj,rrpov del Kal Kadapov, olov 

5 rp(f) irapev/cevao-fAevov Kal eroipov del irapaKtip,evov 
Bio Brj Kal orav rives aKadap&iai yiyvwvrat, Bid vocrovs 
rrepl TO rJTrap, rrdvra r) arr\r}vo^ Kadaipovcra avrd Be^erat, 
are KOI\OV Kal dvaipov ixfravdevros' Wev 7r\r)pov/j,evos 
KaOaipofievwv fieyas Kal VTTOV\O<; av^dverai, Kal rrd\iv, orav D 

10 Kadap0fj TO crtw/za, rarreivov/jievos et? ravrov uvtei. 

XXXIII. T fiev ovv rrepl ^^79, ocrov Qvr]rov e^ei Kal '6crov 
Oelov, Kal O7TT), Kal /u.e#' w/', Kal Bt a %&>/H9 WKicrOrj, TO ^ev a\r)0e<; 
w? eiprjrat, Oeov ^vfifyrjcravTos, TOT' av ovrw //.o/'W9 8ncr^vpt^oi/ji.0a' 
TO 7e fjirjv etVo9 ri[MV elprjcrOai, Kal vvv Kal en ^d\\ov dvaaKOTrovcri 

15 BtaKivBvvevreov TO <j>dvai, Kal rrefydcrdw. TO 8' e^fjs B>} rovroiai E 


i. (TTpr]9iv 8^ TOV STJV] The function 
of the liver in divination is twofold, one 
mode being proper to man, the other to 
beasts. In the living man it is the means 
of warning him by dreams and visions ; 
while the liver of the slaughtered beast 
gives omens of the future by its ap- 
pearance when inspected. The efficacy 
in the first case Plato satirically allows, 
as a sop to human folly; to the second 
he will not allow even this. 

5. eK(JLa-yiov] Here we have a totally 
different use of the word from that in 50 c : 
it now means a sponge or napkin for 
wiping clean. The spleen then, accord- 
ing to Plato, exists solely for the sake of 
the liver, to purge it of superfluous and 
noxious humours, which it receives into 
itself and disposes of. 

72 D 76 E, c. xxxiii. Now to assert 
that all we have said in the foregoing is 
certainly true were folly, wanting the 
assurance of some god, yet the account 
that seemed to us most likely, this we 
have given. On the same plan we have 
next to describe the remaining parts of 
the human body. First the intestines 
were devised as a precaution against 
gluttony and excess, in order that the 

food might not by passing through too 
rapidly leave a void that needed per- 
petual replenishment. Of bones and 
flesh the foundation is the marrow. This 
is made of the very finest and most per- 
fect elements of fire air water and earth 
commingled. Part of this was moulded 
into a globe-like form and placed in the 
head ; the rest, drawn out into a cylindri- 
cal shape, in the spinal column. And 
the marrow of the head, which we call 
the brain, is the habitation of the reason ; 
while the lower forms of soul were at- 
tached to the spinal marrow. Bone is 
formed of fine earth kneaded with marrow 
and then tempered by being plunged 
alternately into fire and water ; and of 
this was made a hard envelope to pro- 
tect the vital marrow : and joints were in- 
serted in the limbs for the sake of flexi- 
bility. And to prevent the structure of 
the bone decaying, the gods constructed 
flesh, and to impart the power of moving 
the limbs at will they made tendons. 
Flesh is a kind of ferment made with fire 
and water and earth, containing an acid 
and saline admixture ; tendons, which 
are of a tougher and finer consistency, are 
made of unfermcnted flesh mingled with 

E] TIMAIO2. 269 

enough ; but when deprived of life, it is become blind and gives 
the token too dimly to afford any plain meaning. And the 
structure of the neighbouring organ and its position on the left 
has been planned for the sake of the liver, in order to keep it 
always bright and clean, as a napkin is prepared and laid ready 
for the cleansing of a mirror. Wherefore whenever any im- 
purities arise in the region of the liver owing to sickness of the 
body, all is received and purified by the fine substance of the 
spleen, which is woven hollow and void of blood. This, when it 
is filled with the impurities from the liver, waxes swollen and 
festered ; and again, when the body is purged, it is reduced and 
sinks again to its natural state. 

XXXIII. Now as concerning soul, how far she has a mortal, 
how far a divine nature, and in what wise and with what con- 
junctions and for what causes she has her separate habitations, 
only when God has confirmed our statement can we confidently 
aver that it is true : nevertheless that we have given the probable 
account we may venture to say even now and still more on 
further meditation, and so let it be said. But what follows 

hone. And such of the bones as con- 
tained the greatest amount of vital marrow 
the gods covered with the thinnest en- 
velope of flesh ; such as contained less, 
with a thicker envelope ; to the end that 
the marrow in the former might not have 
its sensitiveness blunted by a thick cover- 
ing. For this cause the head has but a 
slight covering, though a thicker one 
would have better protected it ; since the 
gods deemed that a shorter and more in- 
telligent life was preferable to a longer 
and less rational. In the construction of 
the mouth and neighbouring parts both 
the necessary cause and the divine cause 
were consulted : the necessary in view of 
the nutriment that must enter in, the 
divine in view of the speech that should 
issue forth. For the further protection 
of the head they devised the following. 
The surface of the flesh in drying formed 
a tough rind, which we call the skin: 
this is pierced by the internal fire of the 

head, and the moisture issuing through 
the punctures forms what we call hair. 
And the nails are formed by the skin at 
the end of the fingers, mixed with tendon 
and bone, being suddenly dried : for the 
gods knew that other creatures would arise 
out of mankind in future ages, which 
would need these defences. 

14. r6 -y* F L1 1 V l*os] It may be ob- 
jected that soul is immaterial and eternal, 
and therefore we must not be satisfied 
with rt> etVAs concerning her. But here 
we are treating not of the nature of soul 
as she is in herself, but of her connexion 
with body : this belongs to the region of 
physics and consequently to that of the 
'probable account'. Therefore Plato 
begins the chapter with a reiterated warn- 
ing that we are dealing with matters where 
absolute certainty is impossible. But this 
does not apply to the exposition con- 
cerning the soul's own nature which we 
had in 34 R 37 r. 

2;o ITAATHNOS [72 E 

Kara ravrd fieraSitoKreov -rjv Se TO rov crwaaros erri\oircov y ye- 
yovev. K Si) \oyicrfiov roiovSe ^vvicrracrPai /iaXtcrr' (iv avro rrdv- 
rwv rrpirroi. rrjv eo-ouevriv ev -rjfuv rrorwv /cat eoearwv dfcoXaaiav 
ySeaav ol vvri0evre<> rj^wv TO 761/09, ical ori rov /j,erpiov /cal dvay- 
5 Kaiov Sid [J,apy6rr)ra 7roXX&3 %pr](roiae6a rr\eovi' 'iv ovv /IT) fyOopd 
Sid vocrovs 6eia yiyvoiro Kal aTeXe? TO 761/09 evdvs TO Bvtjrov re- 
\evrq), ravra 7rpooptt>fivoi rr) rov Trepiyevrja-o/^evov Tro/iaTO? eSe- 73 A 
re e^ei rrjv ovo^a^o^iv^v /cdrw Koi\iav vrro^o'^rjv edecrav, 
re rrept,% rrjv rwv evrepwv yeve<riv, OTTOJ? firj ra%i> BieKTre- 

10 pwcra TI rpo<j)t] ra^v rrd\t,v rpocf)^ erepas Selo'Qai, TO <rt/ia dvay- 
Ka^ot, ical rrape^ovcra art\T]crrl.av Std yacrrpijiapyiav dfyiXoaofyov 
Kal dfiovo-ov rrdv drrore\ol TO 761/09, dvvrrrjKoov rov 0eiordrov rwv 
Trap" 'fjfiiv. TO Se oartav Kal <rapK(v Kal rfj<; roiavrrjs (frvo-eax; 
rcepi rcacrris a>8e e<r%e. TouTot9 f;vfj,rracriv dp^rj fj,ev t] rov fj,ve\ov B 

15 yeveo-i*}' ol yap rov ftiov 8eo~//,oi Tr;9 ^w^i/9 ra> cra>fiari ^vvSovfjLewr) 1 ? 
ev rovrw Siaoovjjievoi, Kareppi^ovv TO dvyrov 761/09. ai;T09 8e o 
//,ueXo9 yeyovev e^ aXXtui/. rwv yap rpiywvwv oaa rrpwra d&rpafir} 
Kal XeZa o^Ta rrvp re Kal vSwp Kal depa Kal yfjv oY a/cpt/3eta9 
/AaXtcrTa ?)V rrapacr'xelv Sward, ravra 6 deos drro rwv eavrwv 

10 eKaara yevwv %&>/H9 drroKpivwv, ^471/1)9 Be d\\ij\oi<; ^vfifjuerpa, C 

6 re\evT(f : Tf\evT<fi) S. 7 Tro/Jiaros: Trw/xaroi ASZ. 

i. rfv 8^] Referring back to 61 c gluttony. Aristotle has a preciser con- 

<rap/cos S *col TUV vepl capua ytveviv, ception : see de partibus animalium III 

^I/XTJJ re oaov Ovifrbv, oviru di(\T)\t0a/j.ev. xiv 674* 12 foil. 

8. rqv 6vo|iao|j^vTiv] 'So-called', g. ra\v SicKircputra] We should thus 

because 17 K&TW icoi\ia was a medical relapse into the life symbolised by the 

term : see Hippokrates passim : it de- dyyeta rerprj^va Kal <ra0pk in Gorgias 

noted all the region of the body below 493 E : cf. 494 B \apaSptou TU>' av <ri> 

the 0c6pa| strictly so called : cf. Aristotle fttov Xye. 

problemata xxxill ix 962' 35 rpiwv rbiruv 15. ol -yip TOV PIOV Sco-pof] That is 

6i>Tui>, Kf^aX^s Kcd BupaKos Kal rr/s /cdrw to say, it is through the marrow that the 

KoiXiaj, 77 Ke<t>a\ri Oei^rarov. The BJopa^, soul is linked to the body. Plato, though 

though sometimes applied to the entire unacquainted with the nervous system, 

cavity of the body, was properly identical saw clearly that the spinal marrow and 

with i] &i>u Koi\ia, which included the ultimately the brain was the centre of 

stomach: cf. de partibus animalium in consciousness: a point wherein he is 

xiv 675 b 29. much ahead of Aristotle, who declared 

viro8oxi]v] Plato does not seem to (i) that the brain and spinal marrow are 

have understood very clearly the func- essentially different substances, (2) that 

tions of this part of the human anatomy, the function of the brain is merely to cool 

merely regard ing it as a safeguard against the region of the heart : see de partibus 

73 c] TIMAIO2. 271 

upon the foregoing is the next object of our research : this 
was the manner wherein the rest of the body has come into 

The following is the design on which it were most fitting 
to conceive that it is constructed. They who framed our race 
knew the intemperance in meat and drink that would prevail 
in us, and that for greed we should use far more than was 
moderate or necessary. In order then that swift destruction 
through sickness might not fall upon us, and that the mortal 
race might not perish out of hand before coming to com- 
pletion, foreseeing the danger they made the abdomen, as it is 
called, a receptacle to contain the superfluity of food and drink, 
and coiled the bowels round about therein, lest the food passing 
speedily through should compel the body quickly to stand in 
need of a fresh supply, and thus producing an insatiable craving 
should render the whole race through gluttony devoid of phi- 
losophy and letters and disobedient to the highest part of our 

Concerning the bones and flesh and all such substances the 
case stands thus. The foundation of all these is the marrow : 
for the bonds of life whereby the soul is bound to the body 
were fastened in it throughout and planted therein the roots 
of human nature. But the marrow itself comes from other 
sources. Such of the primal triangles as were unwarped and 
smooth and thus able to produce fire and water and air and 
earth of the purest quality, these God selected and set apart, 
each from its own class, and mingling them in proportion one 

animalium II vii 652* 24 TroXXots yap i)5aros nal 7^5. Plato had considerably 

Kal o tyKt<pa\os doKel /uveXdj elvat Kal less knowledge of anatomy than Ari- 

&PXV rov /\ov dia rd ffvvfx^i T&V paxiTt)i> stotle ; but this is one of several cases 

aury bpoiv (\6v. tan dt vav rovvav- where his superior scientific insight keeps 

rlov avr$ T7]i> (pvffiv, us direiv o ptv yap him nearer to the truth. 

dyKt(f>a\os if/vxp^Tarov TWV tv T<$ ffufj-aTi 1 6. Iv TOVTCO] i.e. in the spinal mar- 

fj.opi(j)v, 6 8 /tueXos Otp/jas rrjv <j>tiai.v. row; for the brain was the seat of the 

652 b 16 tird 5' airavra Setrai r^y tvavrias Oeiov ytvos. 

poTTT?*, IVa Tvyx^ v V T0 " P-fTplov Kal roO 17. i dXXwv] sc. 77 oarGiv Kal aapKuv 

fj.tffov,...8t.a raijTTjv TTJV alriav irpos rbv Kal TWV TOLOVTWV. 

rrjs KapSlas T&ITOV Kal rrjf Iv avry Oep- raiv ydp rpiyiavuv] The triangles being 

/j.6rr)Ta fj.efj.r)x<ivriTai r6v tyKt<f>a\ov ?} the elements of the corpuscules of which 

<t>v<ns, Kal TOVTOV "X.o.piv virapxfi TOVTO TO matter is composed, Plato speaks of them 

fj.&piov TOIJ fvois, T-TIV <t>ti<riv (x ov Koivr/v as the elements 

272 ITAATHNOS [73 c- 

Travcnrepfjiiav rcavrl 6vr]rw yevei fjurj^avoo/jievof, rov\ov e avrdov 
aTreipydaaro, teal perd ravra Brj <f)VTva>v ev avru> KareBei rd rv 
fyvxwv yevrj, o"^r)/j,dra)v re ocra efjue\\ev av o-^creiv old re KaP 
Kao~ra e'iBr}, rov /jive\ov avrov rocravra Kal roiavra Bippelro <ryn~ 
5 fiara evOus ev ry Siavopf) T/} (ip%d$. KOI rrjv pev ro delov 
airepp,a olov apovpav p,e^\ovcrav egeiv ev avry Trepifapr) rrav- 
ra%fj TrXacra? errwvo fiacre rov /iueXoO ravrrjv rrjv fioipav e<yKe(f)a\ov, D 
eo? aTToreXea-Qevros eicdcrrov %q>ov ro rrepl rovro dyyelov Ke(f)a\rjv 
yevrjcrofjievov o 8' av ro XoiTroz/ K.CLI Ovrjrov T^9 "^rv^rjf e/ieXXe 

10 Ka6e%ew, a^a crrpoyyv\a Kal 7rpofj,r)(cr) Bir/peiro o-^^/aara, /ji,ve\ov 
Se Trdvra eVeq^/ztcre, ical KaOdrrep e dytcvpwv /3aXXo//.ei>oc? f/c rov- 
ra>v 7rdcrr}<f "^v^fjf Sea-fj-ovs rrepl rovro ^V/JLTTUV rjSrj ro aw^a r][jL<av 
aTreipyd^eTo, crreyaafjia fiev avrw rrpwrov ^vfjimfj^vv^ 7repiffo\ov 
6<rreivov. ro 8e oarovv vvio~rijcriv tSe' <yr)v Siarrijo-as KaOapdv E 

15 Kal \eiav efyvpacre Kal e8evo~e five\a>, KOI perd rovro et<? rcvp avro 
evri6r)o-i, yu,er' eicelvo 8e elf v&wp ftdrrrei, rraXiv Be et9 rrvp av6ls re 
elf vStap' /j,Ta<f)epa)v S' ovrw 7roXX<:</ct? elf eicdrepov vir dfifyolv 
drrjKrov aTreipydcraro. Kara^pw^evof STJ rovry Trepl fiev rov 
eyKe<f>a\ov avrov o-^alpav Trepteropvevaev ocrreivijv, ravry Be crre- 

iovr}v BiegoBov /careXeiTrero Kal rrepl rov Biav%eviov ap.a Kal vw- 74 A 
rialov /j,v\ov e avrov cr(f)ovBv\ov<? -rr\dcraf vTrereivev olov crrpo- 
<pi,yya<;, dpdfjLvo<; drro rrjf K(j>a\fj$, Bid Travros rov Kvrovf Kal 
TO rcav Br) a-rrep^a Biao~q>a>v ovrw \i6oeiBel rrepi^6\w %vve<frpa%ev, 

13 veplfio\ov : sic H e Valckenari coniectura. irepl 6\ov ASZ et codices omnes. 

20 Kare\elw(TO : KaTeXiirero SZ. 23 oC/rw : oi'rws A. 

i. iravorirepiACav] The marrow, being however no special divisions of (ive\os for 

formed from all the four elements, was the OvfMOfidts and the tiriOv/j.i)Ti.Koi> sepa- 

capable of supplying material for all parts rately ; the spinal cord serving for the 

of the human frame. &vi)ri>v as a whole. 

3. Sera gpeXXev] It is remarkable 5. TJJ Kar' apxas] i. e. without wait- 

that, although Plato only mentions two ing for the differentiation to be made in 

ffX^na-Ta explicitly, his phraseology is so the course of evolution. 

studiously vague concerning their number 6. irspwj^pTj] The brain is made ap- \ 

as to lead one to imagine that he may proximately spherical, because, as we 

have suspected the existence of further have seen, the action of reason is sym- 

ramifications of /ii>e\6s, such as in fact bolised by the rotation of a sphere on its 

are the nerves. axis : cf. 44 D rt> rov Travros 

Kaff CKOcrra rfStj] sc. rijs ^i>X 7 ? s : 
the shape of the different portions of 

marrow in the body was made to suit 8. cos...'yVT)<r6(Mvov] The construc- 

the nature of that particular function of tion is that which is known as the accu- 

soul which acted through it. There are sative absolute : compare Protagoras 342 

74 A] TIMAIO2. 273 

with another, to make a common seed for all the race of mortals, 
he formed of them the marrow ; and thereafter he implanted 
and fastened in it the several kinds of soul ; and according to 
the number and fashion of the shapes that the soul should have 
corresponding to her kinds, into so many similar forms did he 
divide the marrow at the very outset of his distribution. And 
that which should be as it were a field to contain in it the divine 
seed he moulded in a spherical form all round ; and this part of 
the marrow he called the brain, with the view that, when each 
animal was completed, the vessel containing it should be the 
head. But that which was to have the mortal part of soul 
which remained he distributed into moulds that were at once 
round and elongated : but he called all these forms marrow ; 
and from these, as though from anchors, he put forth bonds to 
fasten all the soul, and then he wrought the entire body round 
about it, first building to fence it a covering of bone. And 
bone he formed in this way : having sifted out earth that was 
pure and smooth he kneaded and soaked it with marrow, and 
after that he placed it in fire ; and next he set it in water, and 
again in fire, and once more in water : and thus having shifted 
it many times from one to another he made it indissoluble by 
either. Making use of this, he carved a bony sphere thereof to 
surround the brain, but on one side he left a narrow outlet ; and 
around the marrow of the neck and back he made vertebrae of 
bone and set them to serve as pivots, beginning at the head and 
carrying them through the whole length of the body. Thus to 
preserve all the seed he enclosed it in a strong envelope, and he 

c KO.I ol fiitv WT& re KardyvvvTan /j.ifi.oi'>fj.(voi her action to the rest of the body. The 

curort, Kal 1/j.dvTas irepi(i\iTTovT<u Kal word 5cr/uoi>j does not refer to any liga- 

<J>i\oyvfj.vaffTouffi Kal fipaxeias di/a/SoXas ment or the like, nor has it any physical 

<popovfftv, ws drj TOVTOIS Kparovvras rCiv significance : it is purely metaphorical. 

'E\\-/ivui> TOI/S AaKf5ai/j.oviovs. For the phrase Ka.6a.irep t Aynvpuv com- 

10. o-rpoyyvXa KalirpofJ.T]KT]] 'Round pare 85 E (\vffe ret rfp ifsvxfy avruOev clov 

and elongated' is the same thing as j/ews a-dcr/taro. 

'cylindrical' : this of course refers to the 13. ip|JoXov] The ms. reading rtpl 

vertebral column. 8\ov will no doubt yield a reasonable 

1 2. irdurqs 4)(TJs 8e<rjxous] The brain sense. But Valckenaer's correction is so 
and spinal marrow serve as conductors of much more apt that I have not hesitated 
vital force; it is on them that the soul to follow Hermann in accepting it. Be- 
immediately acts the XoyiffTiK&v work- low in 74 A we have \t6otidfi Te/x/JoXy 
ing through the brain, the &\oyoi> through ^iW^paSex. 
the spinal marrow and they transmit 15. jitrd TOVTO tU irvp] The process 

P. T. 18 


[74 A 

dpdpa, TT) OaTepov Trpoa^pcofievo^ ev avTois w 
evia-Tapevr) Bvvdpet, Kivr)o~e(t)<s Kal /ca/i>/re&>9 eveKa. TTJV B av Trjs 
oo-TivT]<; (puo-ews egiv 777*7 crduevos TOV BeovTO? KpavpoTepav elvat B 
Kal aKafjiTTTOTepav, BiaTrvpov T' av iyiyvofjLevr]v Kal ira\iv -^rv^Ofjievrjv 
5 o-<f>aKe\io-aa-av ra^i) Bia(f>0epelv TO o-7repfjui eVro9 avTrjs, Bid raura 
oyrtw TO TCOI/ vevpwv Kal TO T^9 crap*o9 <yevo<; e^^avd-ro, "va TU> fjtev 
cnravTa Ta /ie\77 %vvBij<ra<; eTriTeivofAevy Kal at/ie/zei/w Trept roi;9 
crTpoduyyas KafiTTTOfjievov TO trw/ia /cat eKTetvofievov 7rape%oi, TTJV 

vfjLaTGJv ?rp 0/3X17 /u,a 8e ^eiputvdtv, ert oe 
ecreffOai KTrn^ara, awp,aai u.a\atcw<^ /cat C 
VTreiKOVcrav, Oepfj-r/v Be voTiBa ei/TC9 eayr^9 e%ov<Tav Oepovs 
fj,ev dviBlovo~av Kal voT^o^evqv e^wOev 1^1)^09 /cara ?ray TO crayta 
oiKeiov, Bid ^etyti<wi/o9 8e ird\iv av TOVTW TU> irvpl TOV 
e^a)0ev Kal Trepiio-Tdfjievov Trdyov d/j,vvei<T0ai pe- 
15 Tp/(U9. Ta/Ta r/fjiwv BiavorjOel? 6 Kr)pOTT\daTr)<;, vBaTt jjuev Kal irvpl 
Kal jf] iy/./4ta9 Kal %vvapiioo-a<s, eg 0^609 Kal aX/ivpoO 

10 TTT(i)fJ,T(t)V 


is obviously suggested by the tempering 
of metal. 

i. TT] BdTe'pov irpo(rxp(d|J-evos] This 
expression is very obscure; and no 
two interpreters agree as to its meaning. 
Stallbaum is entirely at sea : Lindau, at 
whom he scoffs, throws out a suggestion 
which is much more reasonable than any- 
thing in Stallbaum's note : ' eadem philo- 
sophum corpori et animo tribuere prin- 
cipia gravitatemque eum et expansionem 
comparare cum ratione sensibusque'. 
Martin's idea that ^ ffartpov 
means the synovial fluid is extremely far- 
fetched : could Plato possibly expect any 
one to understand him if he made such 
use of language ? Dr Jackson has sug- 
gested to me an interpretation which is 
certainly much more natural and, I think, 
right. We know that Oartpov expresses 
plurality. Plato then, when he says that 
the gods used ^ Oartpov Sfoa/jus in the 
construction of the bones, simply signifies 
that by means of joints they divided the 
bones into a number of parts, Kdju^ewj 
Kal Kitr/ofus HveKa. Iv nfoy I take to 
mean between the bones the joints 

represent the principle of Bdrepov, as 
being the cause of division and plurality. 

4. Sidirwpov T' av y'Y vo F^ vr l v ] That 
is to say, subjected to vicissitudes of tem- 

5. o-4>aKeX(o-ao-a.v] This is a medical 
term, signifying caries of the bones or 
gangrene of the flesh : it is also used of 
the blighting of plants; Aristotle de in- 
ventnte vi 470* 31 X^-yereu <r<j>aKf\lfav 
Kal affTp6(3\Tfra yivecrOai, TO. dtvdpa irtpl 
TOI>S Katpofc TOWTOI/S. 

ri <nrcp|ia] i.e. TOV\6v : cf. 73 C. 

6. ri TWV vevpwv] By vevpa Plato 
always means tendons or ligaments, not 
nerves, which were entirely unknown to 
him. Aristotle always uses the word in 
the same sense : see de partibns ant- 
maliitm II ii 6tf b i6ra Si frpa. KCU o-reped 
T&V onoiofjLfpwv iariv, olov (XTTOVV axavffa 
vfvpov <p\t\f/. The nature, almost the ex- 
istence, of the nerves was not discovered 
till considerably after Plato's time: 
Erasistratos, who flourished in the next 
century, is said to have been the first who 
ascertained their functions. Aristotle 
seems to have had some sort of vague 



made joints in it, using the power of the Other as an inter- 
mediary between the parts, for the sake of moving and bending 
them. But deeming that the structure of bone was too rigid 
and inflexible, and that should it be inflamed and cooled again, 
it would rot away and quickly destroy the seed within it, for this 
cause God devised the sinews and the flesh, that binding all the 
limbs together with the former he might by their tension and 
relaxation round their pivots enable the body to bend and ex- 
tend itself; while the flesh he designed as a defence against 
heat and a shelter from cold ; and moreover that it might be, 
like coverings of felt, a protection against falls, gently and easily 
yielding to external bodies; and containing a warm moisture 
within itself, in summer it might exude this, and spreading 
dampness on the surface might diffuse a natural coolness over 
all the body; but in winter on the other hand it might by its 
own fire afford a fair protection against the frost that assailed 
and surrounded it from without Considering this, he that 
moulded us like wax made a mixture and blending of water 
and fire and earth ; and compounding a ferment of acid and salt 

knowledge of the optic and olfactory 
nerves, which he calls iropci: cf. de parti- 
bus animalium it xii 656 b 16 IK nev ovv 
TUV 6<pda\fj.uv ol tropoi <j>tpov<riv els TO.S 
iff pi TOV fyKe<pa\ov <p\^as' iraXiv d' K 
TOW UTUV uffaiTus irupos elf Tovtna6ev 
avvaarTft : also historia animalium I xvi 
495 a 1 1 (f>tpov<n 5' tic TOV 6(p6a\fj.ov Tpels 
jropoi els TOV fyK^aXov, 6 fiev fj.eyi<rTos Kal 
6 peaos els T-qv Tra.peyKe<t>a\l8a 6 5' eXdx'tf- 
TOS (Is avrov TOV eyK^tpa\ov ' ^Adxwros 5' 
effTlv 6 irpbs T$ /j.vnTrjpi /jiiXiffra. About 
the auditory nerve he gives a very con- 
fused statement, apparently, as Martin 
observes, mistaking for it the Eusta- 
chian tube: ibid. 492* 19 TOVTO 5' els nev 
TOV eyK.e<pa.\ov OVK ?x el iropov, els 5t TOV 
TOV OTo/uaros oupavov. Aristotle's notions 
concerning the brain are sufficient evi- 
dence that he did not really understand 
anything about the nature of the nerves. 
That Alkmaion was acquainted with the 
optic nerves, notwithstanding the state- 
ment of Kallisthenes adduced by Chalci- 

dius, seems highly improbable: indeed 
the words of Kallisthenes, as there re- 
ported, hardly amount to this. 

9. irpoffoXtiv ... irp6p\i]|xa] There 
seems to be absolutely no difference in 
meaning between these two words, and 
the juxtaposition of two closely cognate 
forms without any distinction of sense is 
strange. Is it possible that we ought to 
read TrpojSoXV in both cases? Plato, like 
Sophokles, is given to repeating the same 
word with per and 6^; as in Phaedrus 
247 D Ka8op$ fj.ev avTijV diKaioo~vvir)v, 
Ka.0op<j. oe <ru<f>poffviri)i', Ka0op$ de e-ri- 
aTri/j.r]v : see too below 87 A irotuciXXet (itv 
.. .TrotK/XXei 5^. And there is quite suffi- 
cient ornateness in the present passage to 
justify this rhetorical device. As to the 
construction, the future infinitives are sub- 
stituted for the final clause: something 
like d.evo^07) must be mentally supplied. 

13. oiKtiov] contrasted with TOV irepi- 
<pepo/j.evov ti-wOev. 

16. Kal YTJ] I s 66 no sufficient reason 
IS 2 

276 ITAATHNOS [74 c 

KOI UTTO/u^a? aurot?, crdpKa ey^y'fiov KOI /jt,a\a,Krjv %vve- D 
crrrjcre' rfjv Be rwv vevpcov cpvcriv e ocrrov Kal crapKos dfypov tepd- 

oOev crvvrovwrepav f^-ev KOI <y\KT~^porepav crapK&v, 
5 /j.a\aKO)repav Be ocrrwv vyporepav re eKrijcraro Bvvaaiv vevpa. 0*9 
%vfjL7repi\a/3(tiv 6 #ec<? oard /cat fj,ve\6v, Brjaas irpo? a'XX^Xa vev- 
pot9, fiera ravra aap^l Trdvra avra KareaKiacrev avwOev. ocra fjiev E 
ouv e/i^y^oTara rdov oaruiv rfv, oXfyiVrat? avvefyparre crap^iv, a 8 
a^rv^orara evros, 7rXet(7Tat9 Kal TrvKVoraTcus. Kal &r/ KOI Kara 
10 ra? ^f/Lty8oX,? TWV ocrrw/', OTtrj ^ riva dvdjKTjv 6 \6yos aTre^aive 
aura? elvai, /3pa%elav crdpfca ecfrvcrev, iva //,7/re e/iTroSeoi' rat? 
ovcrai Svcrtfropa rd crw^ara aTrepyd^oivro. are SvcrKivijra 
/A^T' av TroXXat real Trv/cval a~(f)68pa re ev a 
fA7r7ri\r)[ji6vai, Bid o-repeorrjTa dvai(rdrjcriav efiTrotovcrai, 
15 fjLOvevTorepa Kal Kax^orepa rd Trepl rrjv Sidvoiav iroiolev. Bio Brj TO 
T ru>v firiputv Kal Kvr)/j,di)v Kal TO Trepl rrjv rwv la"%iu>v (fiixriv rd re 75 A 
\rrepl ra] rwv /3pa%i6va)v ocrrd Kal rd rwv rrri^ewv, Kal o<ra aXXa 
T^/ieov dvapOoa, 'ocra re eVro? oard Be 1 o\ij6rr)ra ^rv)(rj<f ev //.ueX&i 
Kevd ecrn (f>povrj crews, ravra Trdvra crv^rrerrXrjpwrai, crap^iv 'ocra 8' 
20 ejji<j>pova, rjrrov, el JAIJ rcov riva avrrjv K.aff avrrjv alcrBrjcretov evexa 

i Kal ante viro/j.las omittunt AHZ. 3 a.n<j>oiv. awapfolv supra scripto i A. 
17 irepl TO. inclusi, quae retinet H. omittunt SZ. 

for abandoning the reading of all the <5(rr^> irf<f>vKaffi, Kal rp^ovrai 8 rb 

mss., since cra/3/io is readily supplied as the jr\er<rro' K TOV 6ffr4ov, rp^<povrat 5^ Kal 

object of v/j.ntas : and if 7771' be read, dirb T^S <ra/>*c6j, Kal TTJV XPV * a ^ T '?" 

*ai is positively bad. The insertion of laxbv //ero^i) TTJS yapicds Kal TOV iffrtov 

Kal before virofj.ii;as seems to me, in this ire(iMa<rt. Kal vyporepa. /j.(v d<ri TOV 

accumulation of participles, almost neces- do-rtov Kal ffapKociSfffrtpa, Zripbrepa 5^ rj 

sary, although it is lacking in A. ai ffdpKes Kal <5<rroei5<:<rre/m. This extract 

1. tvfj.(o|xa] This means a fermented will explain the meaning of iiAai)v Svvd- 
mixture : it would seem to be intended pei. 

thereby to explain the combined softness 5. ots 5 v f l ' TT ' P l ^ a P <l ''] The reference 

and elasticity of flesh. Flesh could also of ots is to vevpa. 

be made of unfermented materials, as we 7. 8<ra \iv o5v lfi|ru\oTOTa] This 

presently see: t6ffTov Kal aapKcs a^vfiov: rather curious expression denotes the 

but the difference in the composition is bones which contain the greatest amount 

not stated. of marrow marrow being the seat of 

2. TijV TWV vtupwv <j>vo-iv] The de- life. By these are meant the bones of 
scription of vevpa tallies closely with the skull and the vertebral process only ; 
that given by Hippokrates de locis in since it is clear from what Plato says 
homittf\o\. II. p. 107 KUhn ra 8t vedpa. a little below (Sib dy rl> re rCiv nypCiv 

ton Kal d/ro/Aia Kal irp&s r<j3 K.T.\.) that he entirely distinguished be- 

75 A] TIMAIOS. 277 

he mingled it with them and produced soft flesh full of sap : the 
sinews he composed of bone and unfermented flesh, a separate 
substance having an intermediate function; and to this he added 
a yellow colour. Accordingly the sinews received a power more 
firm and tenacious than the flesh, but more soft and flexible 
than the bones. 

With these God covered the bones and marrow; and after he 
had bound one part to another with sinews, he enveloped them 
over all with flesh. Those bones which were chiefly inhabited 
by soul, he enclosed with the smallest amount of flesh ; but 
those wherein was least soul he covered most abundantly and 
densely with it : moreover at the joints of the bones, save where 
reason showed that it ought to be there, he put but little flesh, 
that neither it might render the body unwieldy by hindering its 
flexions and impeding its .motions, nor again that a dense mass 
of flesh piled together, producing by its hardness a dulness of 
sensation, might render the faculties of the mind too slow of 
memory and hard of apprehension. Wherefore the thighs and 
the shins and the parts about the hips and the bones in the 
upper arms and the fore-arms and all parts of our limbs which 
are without joints, and all bones which are devoid of intelligence 
owing to the small amount of soul inhering in marrow within 
them, all these are abundantly furnished with flesh; but those 
which are the seat of intelligence have less: except in cases 

tween the substance contained in the of its particles would be impeded, and 
spinal column and what we call 'marrow' consequently sensations would with diffi- 
in other bones, which he does not ac- culty make their way to the conscious- 
count as jtueXos at all. Aristotle, owing ness : cf. 64 B. This rather seems to 
to his complete misconception of the apply to the density of the flesh than 
functions belonging to the brain and to its quantity; but doubtless the same 
spinal marrow, is much less clear on effect might be produced by both, 
this point : see de partibus animalium 20. A pj irov] The only instance in 
II v 65 i b 32. It is true that Plato which an acutely sensitive part is of a 
assigns as the reason for the fleshiness fleshy nature is when the flesh itself is 
of the arms, thighs, &c, that these bones the instrument of perception ; as in the 
are (LvapOpa: still, had they contained case of the tongue, and that only. Of 
/xveXos, that would have been a reason course in all cases the external irafl^a 
for giving them a thin covering of flesh. is conveyed through the flesh to the con- 
n. avTcis] sc. riis <rap/ca?. scions centre; but in general the flesh 
14. 4(iTriri,XT](Uvai] If from too much is only the medium of transmission, and 
crowding the substance of the flesh be- the less flesh there is to traverse, the 
came very stiff and solid, the free mol ions more speedily and clearly \\ill the sen- 

2 7 8 


[75 A 

crdptea ovrw ^vvecrrrjcrev, olov TO rfjs y\(arri)<; eiSo?. rd Be TrXetcrra 
eteelvw rj yap e dvdy/erjs yiyvo/jbevrj KOI ^vvrpe^o/JLevrj (fiixris 
ovBajjifj TrpocrBe^erai TTVKVOV oarovv teal trdptca 7ro\\rjv dfj.a re B 
avrois ogvijfcoov aiadrjaiv. fjL'i\.i(rra yap av avrd irdvrwv e<r^ev r) 

5 Trepi rrjv K<f>a\r)v ^va-raais, eiTrep a/j,a ^VfjurtTrreiv rj0e\r)<Tdrr)t', teal 
TO rv dvQptoirwv yevos a-aptcwBrj e%ov e'<' eaurco teal vevpwBrj 
Kparepiiv re K(f>a\rjv /3/oy av Snr\ovv ical 7ro\\a7r\ovv teal vyiei- 
vorepov teal nXvTrorepov rod vvv KareKrrjcraTO' vvv Be rot? irepl rrjv 
jfjierepav yeve<riv Brj/jiiovpyois ava\oyio(j,evoi<;, irorepov iro\v- 

10 xpoviwrepov X ^P OV 7 / ^pa^v^poviwrcpov fteknov aTrepyaa-aivro C 
yevos, (rvveBo^e rov irXeiovo^ /3/oi/, <f)av\orepov Be, rov e\('nrova 
afieivova ovra Travrl Travra)^ aipereov o6ev Br) /iai>a> ftev oVrcS, 
crap^l Be teal vevpois K6<f>a\.r]v, are ovBe KafATras e^oucrav, ov vve- 
Giiyacrav. Kara iravra ovv ravra evaicrOrjTorepa fiev teal 

15 Tepo, TroXi) Be da-devearepa Travros dvBpds Trpoaeredrj 

ra Be vevpa Bid ravra /cat OUT&J? 6 Oeos eV ecr^drrjv rrjv 

repl rev rpd^r)\ov tc6\\r]crv OJJLOIO- D 


12 Tif ante /tavf habet A. 13 06 delet A. 

sation be registered in the consciousness. 
But in the case of the tongue, on the 
contrary, the fleshy structure is speci- 
fically adapted for the reception and dis- 
crimination of a particular class of sen- 
sations, and is no longer a mere passive 
medium. Hence Plato's distinction is 

2. T] -yelp i dva-yKTjs] That is to say, 
the conditions of the material nature to 
which our soul is linked will not admit 
of the combination of a dense covering 
of flesh with acute sensitiveness. This 
would have seemed too obvious to need 
pointing out, but for Stallbaum's perverse 
comment 'intelligit animum'. Of course 
Plato does not mean anything so absurd 
as to deny that the flesh of the thigh, 
for instance, is acutely sensitive : he only 
means that the thigh is Ktvov ^-poj^irews : 
it has no power of perceiving anything 
apart from the mere sense of touch re- 
siding in its nerves ; whereas the parts 
containing /-tueXos are centres of conscious- 
ness, and the fleshy structure of the 

tongue is the organ of a special mode 
of sensation. 

4. pa\iora ^op] Had such a com- 
bination been practicable, the gods 
would certainly have given the brain 
a more powerful protection than it now 
has: as it is, they sacrificed length of 
days and immunity from sickness to 
vividness of perception and power of 
reasoning. Aristotle attacks this doctrine 
because it does not fall in with his fan- 
tastic theory of the brain's functions: see 
de partibus atiiwaliutn II xii 656* 15 ov 
yap ucrirtp TU>S \4yovfftv, 6Vt el <rapKu.5ris 
r/v, /za/c/JO/SiaTepcv dv ffV TO yivos' dXX' 
tvaifffftiffias e'vtKev affapxcv total <f>affiv 
aicrBaffffdai> yap T<j> fyKf>d\tf), TT\V 
5' atffdriffiv ov irpoffifffffai ra fjiopia TO. 
ffapK<t)dr) X'ac. TOI'TWH 5' ovSfrepAv larw 
d\i)6&, d\\d iroXvcrapKOS fj^v 6 roVos uv o 
irepi TOV yKf<j>a\oi> rovvavriov SLV direipyd- 
fero <lv eVfAca \nrdpxti TOIS &ots 6 eyKe- 
0aXos" 01) yap dv tovvaro KaTa\f/vxfii> 
aKeaivuv ai/Vdj Xiap' TUV 5' alffOr/ffewv 
OVK atrtoi ov5ffj.ids, 6j ye dfat(r6rjTos /cat 

D] TIMAIOS. 279 

where God has formed the flesh to be in itself an organ of 
sensation, as for instance the tongue: in most however it is as 
aforesaid; for this material nature which comes into being by 
the law of necessity and is reared with us does not allow dense 
bone and much flesh to be accompanied by ready and keen per- 
ception. For had these two conditions consented to combine, 
the structure of the head would have displayed them in the 
highest degree ; and the human being, bearing upon it a fleshy 
head, sinewy and strong, would have enjoyed a life twice, nay 
many times as long as now, besides being much more healthy 
and free from pain. But as it is, the creators who brought us to 
being considered whether they should make a long-lived race 
that was inferior, or one more short-lived which was nobler, and 
they agreed that every one must by all means choose a shorter 
and nobler life in preference to a longer but baser. Therefore 
they covered the head with thin bone, but not with flesh 
nor sinews, since it has no flexions. On all these grounds the 
head that is set upon the body of every man is much quicker of 
apprehension and understanding, but much weaker. For these 
reasons and in this manner God placed the sinews all round the 
base of the head about the neck and cemented them with 

ai)To'j tvriv uffirep OTLOVV TWV irepiTTw- 16. eir* co-xdTTjv T^V KajmXijv] Plato 

fjidruv. Aristotle is, I believe, to a cer- supposes the vevpa to pass up the neck 

tain extent right in his assertion respect- and terminate at the base of the head, 

ing the avaiad^ala. of the brain ; so that made fast to the jawbone, 

we have here again an instance of his 17. JKoXXrjo-cv OIXOIOTTJTI] It is im- 

drawing a false conclusion from correct possible that O/IOIO'TI/TI can simply stand 

data. One might have supposed that he for oyuoiws, as Stallbaum asserts ; nor is 

who affirmed an anlvriTos &pxn Kivricreus he justified by the passage he cites, f!e- 

need not have felt much difficulty about public 555 A, frt ovv, rjv d' tyta, dirto-' 

an dvaioOrjTos dpxrj aiffOrjffeus. ToufJ-ev pr] /card rrjv 6\tyapxov/j.i>i)v troXiv 

avra] i.e. a strong protective cover- oyaotorijrt rov tj>fidw\6v r( Kal x/nj/wmoTrfy 

ing along with keenness of sensation. r-a.x0at ; there obviously the meaning 

13. <rapl 8i Kal vcvpois] Hippo- is that the <pei5u\os and x/wj/iOTtoTj;? are 
krates also denies that the head has vevpa : ranked as corresponding to the oligarchi- 
de locis in homine vol. II. p. 108 Ktihn cal state because of their resemblance to 
Kal TO /J.ev ffufjta irdv fynrXeoi' vetpuv, trepl it ; and similarly in 576 C, & ye rvpav- 
8t TO wpoffunrov Kal TT]V Kt<pa\r]i' OVK (ffTi viKos KOTO. Tr)v Tvpavvoi'nt'vqv iro\ii> av fttj 
vtvpa. ofj.oioTrjTi. In like manner I think we 

14. cvaio-OijTortpo] i.e. more sen- must take it here as an instrumental 
sitive than it would have been had the dative. 

gods taken a different view. 

280 ITAATHNOS [75 D 

TIJTI, KOI TO? criayovas aicpas avrols %vveBr)(rev VTTO rrjv <f>vcriv rov 
Trpocranrov rd 8' a\Xa e/9. airavra TO. fie\r) Biecnreipe, ^vvdirrwv 
dpOpov dpQpy. rr}v Be Brj rov trrouaros r]^&v Bvvapiv oBovtri Kal 
y\a>rrr) Kal %ei\fo-iv eveKa TOJV dvajKaiwv Kal roav dpiarwv Bie- 

5 KCffuvjaav ol BiaKocraovvres, y vvv BiareraKrai, rr)v aev eicroBov 
ruiv dvayKaicav f^rj^avw/jievoi %dpiv, rrjv 8' eo&ov rwv dpi<rrwv E 
dvayicalov fiev yap irav ocrov elaep^erai rpofyrjv StBov ry awj^an, 
TO B \6ywv vdfjba e&> peov Kal vir^perovv (^povrjcrei Kn\\i<nov Kal 
dpicrrov Trdvrwv va/jidrcov. rrjv S' av K<f>a\rjv ovre ftovov ocrrei'vriv 
SvvaTov edv rjv Bid rrjv ev. raZ? a>pai<? e0' e/care/JOf vjrep- 
ijv, ovr av gv<TKiaa-0cicrav Kw^r/v Kal dvaiadr]Tov Bid rov roov 
irepiiBeiv yi'yvoaevrjv. T^? Br) crapKoetBovs <f>vcra)<s 
[ov] Karaf;i)paivo[AevT)<; Xe^a fiel^ov Trepiyiyvopevov e^wp/^ero, 7G A 
Beppa TO vvv \eyo/j.evov. rovro Be Bid TTJV Trepl rov ejK(pa\ov 

15 voriBa ^vvtov avru TT/JO? avro Kal /3\acrrdvov KVK\U) irepirj/jKJjtevvve 
rrjv Ke<pa\ijv r) Be vorls VTTO TO? patfrds dviovcra rjpBe Kal crvvi- 
K\eicrev avro eVi rr/v Kopvfyrjv, olov d/j,/j,a ^vvajayovcra' TO Be r<*>v 
pa(f)wv TravroBaTTov elBos yeyove Bid rrjv r&v TrepioBwv Bvvaftiv Kal 

13 ov inclusi a tribus codicibus omissum. ser\-ant AHSZ. 

A. 14 tepfi*. post ro vuv Xf-yoptvov ponit S. 

4. TWV dva^Ka^wv Kal TWV dpicrrwv] fordert', and renders if 'welche nicht aus- 

This distinction differs from that of dvay- getrocknet war': but obviously this would 

KO.IO. and Oeia in 68 E; for here both require Kara^rjpavfffiff^t I suspect we 

dvayxata and apicrra are an end, not ought to read aC. 

a means. Xt^xjia (iti'^ov] V/iijita is a peel or rind: 

8. Xo^wv voina] Compare the meta- the skin, according to Plato's concep- 

phor in Euripides Hippolyttis 653 dya> tion, is analogous to the membranous 

puTois vaa^oiaiv t%ofwpofMi \ e/s WTO. K\V- film which forms on the surface of 

fa>. Somewhat similar is the metaphor boiled milk, for instance, when exposed 

in Phaedrus 243 D, iroTifjuf \6y<p olov a\- to the air: cf. Aristotle de generations 

(ivpav a.Kor]v d-!roK\vffaff6ai. animalium II vi 743 b 5 TO 5^ 5tp/J.a ij- 

10. ty' Ko.Tpov] sc. ^Trt trviyos Kal paivo/j.^vt}^ TTJS (rap/coy ylverai, Ka.0a.irfp 

\f/vxos. iirl- Tols i\f/Tfi/j.affu> i] \] ypavs. 

n. TOV TWV o-afKMV d\\ov] cf. 42 c Aristotle's language, it may be observed 

TOV TTO\VV 6x^ov KCU SffTfpov irpoff<J>vvTa by the way, supports the omission of ou 

IK irvpos Kal CSaros Kal at pot Kal yrjs. before rara^KMUMpfaft. As to fJ-ftfrv, 

! 3- t "] KaTa|T|paivofUvT]s] Notwith- I see nothing for it but to acquiesce in 

standing the approximate unanimity of Lindau's 'dixit vero fitifrv, quod cetera 

the mss., I do not see how it is possible amplectitur ' : but I cannot believe that 

to reconcile ou with the sense. Surely the the word is genuine. That Plato should 

\t/j.fia is formed by the drying of the sur- think it necessary to point out that the 

face of the flesh. The Engelmann trans- envelope is greater than that which it 

later indeed says it is ' durch den Sinn er- envelopes is altogether incredible : but 

76 A] TIMAIO2. 281 

uniformity; and he fastened the extremities of the jaw : bones to 
them just under the face; and the rest he distributed over all 
the limbs, uniting joint to joint. And our framers ordained the 
functions of the mouth, furnishing it with teeth and tongue and 
lips, in the way it is now arranged, combining in their purpose 
the necessary and the best; for they devised the incoming with 
the necessary in view, but the outgoing with the most excellent. 
For all that enters in to give sustenance to the body is of neces- 
sity; but the stream of speech which flows out and ministers to 
understanding is of all streams the most noble and excellent. 
But as to the head, it was neither possible to leave it of bare 
bone, owing to the extremes of heat and cold in the seasons; 
nor yet by covering it over to allow it to become dull and sense- 
less through the burden of flesh. Of the fleshy material as it was 
drying a larger film formed on the surface and separated itself; 
this is what is now called skin. This by the influence of the 
moisture of the brain combined and grew up and clothed the 
head all round: and the moisture rising up under the sutures 
saturated and closed it in on the crown, fastening it together 
like a knot. Now the form of the sutures is manifold, owing to 
the power of the soul's revolutions and of the aliment; if these 

I cannot see my way to any satisfactory 1 7. TO 8i TWV pcujxuv] The number 

emendation. and diversity of the sutures depends upon 

14. 8e'p(xa] Is this meant to be de- the violence of the struggle described in 

rived from X^t/xa? The PVV looks like 436 foil, between the influx of aliment 

it ; and Plato's etymological audacity has and the revolutions of the soul acting 

adventured things /ciVrepa'than this. through the brain. There is a passage 

8td ri}v irpl riv eyK^aXov voriSa] of Hippokrates which curiously falls in 

Plato is explaining how it comes to with Plato's connexion of the sutures 

pass that the skull is covered with with the soul's irepioSoi: de capitis vul- 

skin, although, according to his account, neribus vol. Ill p. 347 Ktihn 6Vrw /XTJ- 

there is no flesh upon it. He regards it dertpudi juijSe/otfoj' vpo^oK^v ?x> OVTOS 

as an extension of the skin on the face x ei T ^ s ^a^as TTJS Kf<pa\TJs ws ypdfj./j.a rit 

and neck, which grows up over the head X' ypduprrai : that is to say, the rounder 

from all sides, being nourished by the the head the more nearly docs the form 

moisture belonging to the brain, and of the sutures approximate to that of the 

meets on the summit ( vvibv ai)r6 irpbs letter X, which is the form of the inter- 

aurfy. Thereupon the moisture, issuing section of the two circles. When the 

through the sutures, penetrates the skin head is prominent in front, says Hippo- 

and causes it to take root on the head krates, the sutures resemble T; when 

and to grow firmly together where it protuberent behind, the figure is reversed, 

meets in the middle, as it were fastened JL5 if protuberent both before and behind, 

in a knot (olov d'/^ua wayayotVa). the sutures form the figure H. Thus in 

282 HAATHNOS [76 A 

//9, na\\ov (lev d\\rj\oi<; fj,a%ofiev(av rovrwv TrXei'ou?, rjrrov 1* 
Be eXaTTOf?. roCro Brj irav TO Beppa KVK\W tcare/cevTei irvpi TO 
ffeior, TpwOevTOS Be real Trjs iV/xaSo<? e%u> Bt avTov <f>epo[j,evr)<; TO fifv 
vypov Kal Bepfiov 'oaov ei\iKpive<> aTrr/eiv, TO Be /J.IKTOV el; ojv Kal TO 

5 BepfjM ijv, alpofievov fjuev VTTO Trj<j <popd<f e<w fiatpov eYetVero, \e7r- 
TOTrjTa i(7ijv e^ov Tf3 K.aTaicevTijfJ,aTi, Sia Be ftpaBvTrJTa aTriadovpe- 
vov VTTO TOV TrepieaTWTO? e^wOev Trz/eu/iaTo? iraXiv eVTO? tVo TO 
i\\6/j.vov KaTeppi^ovTO, Kal Kara TaiTa Bfj TO, Trddrj TO C 
yevos ev TO) Bep/j.aTi 7re<f>vK, %vyyeve<; pev r/MPtwta ov 

10 atTov, (T/cXypoTepov Be Kal irvKVOTepov Ty TrCh.rjcrei Trjs ^rt'^etu?, 
rjv dTroxwpi^opevr) Bep/j.aTO<f eKao-Trj 6p\% -fyvxOelaa av 
TOVTM Br) \aaiav r)p,wv direipydcraTO Trjv Ke(f>a\rjv 6 TTOIGOV, 
fievos ftev atT/oi? Tot9 elpr)ne.vois, Biavoovfievos Be dvT\ 
aiTo Beiv elvai aTeyao-fj.a T^9 Trepl TOV eyxe(f)a\ov do~(^a- 

*5 Xeia? Kov<f)ov Kal Bepovs ^ei/jbcovo^ TC ixavov aKiav Kal crKeTrrjv 
Trape^eiv, evato-Qrjcria 1 ; Be ovBev BiaKa>\v/j,a e/i7rooVy yevrja-6/J.evov. 
TO Be ev TTJ Trepl TOVS BaKTiiXovs KaTaTr\OKrj TOV vevpov Kal TOV 
5ep/ia,T09 oVrof) Te, ^v^fju^jdev CK Tpuwv, d7ro^r)pav0ev ev KOIVOV 
gu/j,7rdvT(0v o-K\rjpov yeyove BepjjLa, Tot9 f*ev ^vvaniois TOITOIS BTJ- 

10 /J,iovpyr)0ev, T^ Be alTicoTaTp Biavola TWV 7reiTa ecropevoiv eveKa 

3 rpuOtvTos : TprjOfrros SZ. 7 VTTO TOV : airb TOV A. 

8 TO T(>l\(i3V: TO TWV TplXW S. IO TTVKVOTtpOV '. TTVKVlaTtpOV S. 

so far as the shape of the head departs is pure evaporates and disappears ; but 

from the spherical or normal shape, in that which contains an admixture of the 

the same degree the sutures depart from substances composing the skin is forced 

the figure X; and in the same degree we outward in a cylindrical form fitting the 

may suppose the struggle between the size of the punctures. But owing to the 

irepioSot and the KU/J.O. TT?J T/>o0/7J to have slowness of its growth and the resistance 

been long and severe. The treatise con- of the surrounding atmosphere, the hair 

cerning wounds on the head is one of is pushed backwards, so that the end 

those considered to be the genuine work becomes rooted under the skin. Thus 

of Hippokrates. In 92 A we find that the hair is composed of the same sub- 

in the lower animals the dpyia TUIV Trept- stance as the skin, but by refrigeration 

<j>opZv causes the head to assume an elon- and compression has become more hard 

gated shape. and dense. As to its identity with the 

i. rd 0iov] i.e. the brain, which is skin Aristotle agrees: cf. de gen. anitn. 

the seat of TO 6eiov. Plato now passes II vi 745* 20 6vvxct 5 KOI T/3/x es KC ^ K ^~ 

to the growth of the hair, which he paTa. KCU. TO. Toiasra tic TOV btpnaros, 810 

thus explains. The skin of the head Ka.lffv/j.n(Tapj.\\ov<nT(i>otpfj.aTiTas-xp6as. 

is punctured all over by the fire issuing 3. rpw&vros] The suggestion Tpy- 

from the brain: through the punctures Otvros is certainly tempting: but the mss. 

moisture escapes, of which so much as are unanimous, and I retain their read ing, 

D] TIMAIO2. 283 

contend more vehemently one with another, the sutures are more 
in number; but if less so, they are fewer. Now the whole of 
this skin was pricked all about with fire by the divine part: and 
when it v/as pierced and the moisture issued forth through it, all 
the moisture and heat which was pure vanished away; but that 
which was mingled with the substances whereof the skin was 
formed, being lifted up by the impulse, stretched far outwards, 
in fineness equalling the size of the puncture; but owing to the 
slowness of its motion it was thrust back by the surrounding air, 
and being forced in and rolled up under the skin it took root 
there. Under these conditions hair grows up in the skin, being 
of similar nature but of threadlike appearance, and made harder 
and denser by the contraction of cooling: for every hair in being 
separated from the skin was cooled and contracted. Hereby 
has our creator made our.head hairy, using the means aforesaid, 
and conceiving that this instead of flesh should be a covering for 
the protection of the brain, being light and capable of affording 
shade from heat and shelter from cold, while it would be no 
hindrance in the way of ready apprehension. The threefold 
combination of sinew skin and bone in the fabric of the fingers, 
when dried, forms out of all a single hard skin, for the construc- 
tion of which these substances served as means, but the true 
cause and purpose of its formation was the welfare of races not 

though with considerable hesitation. are formed the nails. Plato's statement 

4. dirfl'eiv] They at once departed in here differs somewhat from Aristotle's as 

the course of nature to their own habita- cited above. 

lion : but the earthier substance, having 20. TWV 2imTa <rofxvuv c'vcica] This 

no such impulse, was forced back by the is a very singular declaration. The nails, 

pressure of the atmosphere. by this account, are formed solely for the 

8. clXX6jxvov] 'rolled up': see note development they will afterwards attain 

on 40 B. in the inferior animals, as though they 

13. CUTLCHS rots lpT||A^vois] i.e. the were of no use whatsoever to mankind. 

subsidiary physical causes aforesaid : the The importance of them is no doubt more 

final cause is given next. conspicuous in beasts and birds ; but 

16. Y VT l <r l JlVOV ] Note the change Plato's theory certainly appears rather 
of construction : the future participle paradoxically to ignore their value to 
stands in the place of 5eli> elvai in the the human race. There is however a 
prior cause. curious approximation to Darwinism in 

1 7. KaraTrXoKifjl That is to say, the his statement : the nails appeared first 
three substances of tendon skin and bone in a rudimentary form in the human race ; 
are interwoven into one homogeneous and afterwards in course of evolution the 
body and completely dried; out of this claws of the lion and the talons of the 



[ 7 6 D-. 

eipyaa-fievov. ey? yap TTOTG e' dv&pwv yvvaiK$ /cat raXXa Orjpia 
, tjTriaravTO ol ^vvicrTavre*; ^a?, KOI STJ KOI rfj^ rwv E 

ort TroXXa rwv 0pe/jL/j,dra)v Kal eVt TroXXa Se^crotro 
y&ecrav, o0ev ev dv0pa>7roi<i ev6vs yiyvofAevois inrervjrwa-avro rrjv 
5 rwv ovv%(i)v yeveo-tv rovra) Srj TO) \6ytp teal rat? irpo^aaeo-i, 
Tat/Vat? Se/j/ta r^t^a? <T'> o*>u^a9 re eV a/cpot? rot9 /c<wXot? 

XXXIV. 'ETretS?) Se iravr 1 rjv rd rov Ovrjrov &>ou v[i.7re<pv- 
Kora pepi) Kal fieXi), Trjv Se farjv ev Trvpl Kal irvevpaTL gvveftaivev 77 A 
10 e dvdyKrjs e^eiv avra), Kal Sid ravra VTTO rovrcav rr)KOfjivov KG- 

dv0p(i)7rii>r]$ ^vyyevrj fyvcrews (pva-iv XXU9 ISeais Kal alvOycreari, 
Kepavvvvres, wa#' erepov %wov eivai, ffrvrevovcriv d Srj vvv tff. 

3 drqeoiTo : dtycroivTo A. 6 r' inserui. 

eagle were developed from them. The 
notable point is that Plato evidently does 
not conceive that in the transmigrations 
any arbitrary change of form takes place, 
but that each successive organism is regu- 
larly developed out of its predecessors. 
Plato's notion rests on no zoological evi- 
dence, so far as we know ; it is but a 
brilliant guess : none the less, perhaps 
all the more, seeing that such evidence 
was not at his command, it is a mark 
of his keen scientific insight. 

6.<T'>6'vvxas T] I have 
taken upon me to insert re, since I do 
not believe Stpfta. Tp/x as fovxA* T can be 
Greek. It may be noticed that this cor- 
rection almost restores a hexameter verse : 

\oiffiv tywav. 

Is Plato quoting from some old physical. 
poet? Empedokles might have written 
such a line. 

76 E 77 c, c. xxxiv. So when all the 
parts of the human frame had been com- 
bined in a body for ever suffering waste 
by fire and by air, the gods devised a 
means of its replenishment. They took 
wild plants and trained them by culti- 
vation, so that they were fit for human 
sustenance. Plants are living and con- 

scious beings ; but they have the appe- 
titive soul alone ; they grow of their 
inborn vital force, without impulsion 
from without ; they are stationary in one 
place, and cannot reflect upon their own 

g. ji^pt] Kal ji^Xi]] For this combi- 
nation compare Laws 795 E T&V rov <rw- 
/xaros aurou jj.(\wi> re Kal fj-epuv : and Phi- 
lebus 14 E &rav ns txaffTou ra p.^\ri re Kal 
a/j,a (J.tpr) 5t.e\ui> r<f Xoyy. The distinc- 
tion between the terms is thus defined by 
Aristotle historia aninialium I i 486* 8 
TOW 5 TOLOVTUIV tvia. ov /JLOVOV fitpr) dX\4 
KOL fd\r) KaXtirai' roiavra 5' effrlv Sea 
rwv fjiepav o\a ovra 'drepa. fJ.^prj x ft ^" 
avrois, olov Kf<J>a\r) Kal ffK^Xos Kal x f i-P 
Kal SXoj o j3/)a^t'wj' Kal 6 6u>pa^' ravra 
yap avra T{ fffri n^py SXa, Kal tvriv avTwr 
Zrepa nopia. A /iAos then is that which 
is part of a whole, but is yet in itself 
a definite whole. 

TT]V 8i coi]v Iv irvpl Kal irvetffiaTi] 
Man's life is said to depend on fire 
and air because these are the agents of 
digestion and respiration, as we shall 
see in the next two chapters: cf. 780. 
These two elements in fact keep up the 
vital movement of the human body. 

IO. TTJK^JWVOV KV<n3(lv6v T] Sc. 

77 A] 



yet existing. For our creators were aware that men should pass 
into women, and afterwards into beasts; and they knew that 
many creatures would need the aid of nails for many purposes : 
wherefore at the very birth of the human race they fashioned 
the rudiments of nails. On such reasoning and with such 
purposes did they form skin and hair, and on the extremities of 
the limbs nails. 

XXXIV. Now when all the parts and members of the 
mortal being were created in union, and since his life was made 
perforce dependent upon fire and air, and therefore his body 
suffered waste through being dissolved and left void by these, 
the gods devised succour for him. They engendered another 
nature akin to the nature of man, blending it with other forms 
and sensations, so as to be another kind of animal. These are 

rriKOfj.evov virb irvpos, Kevovfievov UTT' d^poj. 
Plato enters more fully into this in 88 c 

12. aX.Xo.ts ISe'cus xal al<r(H]cr<ri] 
Plants are akin to the nature of man- 
kind, inasmuch as they are animated by 
the same vital principle and are formed 
out of similar physical materials, so that 
they are able to repair the waste of the 
human structure. But the form of these 
organisms is diverse from man's, and 
their mode of sensation is peculiar to 
themselves. Whether Plato was a vege- 
tarian or not, it is clear that he regards 
vegetables as the natural and primaeval 
food of man: see below 80 E, and Epi- 
nomis 975 A &rrw STJ irpurov ph j} rrfi 
d.\\ti\o<f>a.ylas rwv fyuv rjfii.a.s TWC /JL^V, wj 
6 fjivOfo fffn, rt> ira.p<iira.v -d.iroffTriffa.iTa, 
rCiv d fk TTJV vofj.ij.iov iSudriv /toTacm}- 
ffaya. We must of course allow for the 
possibility that the author of the Epi- 
nomis has overstated Plato's disappro- 
bation of animal diet. 

13. a 8t) viv rf|ipa S^vSpa] So then 
the device of the gods for the preserva- 
tion of human life was not the invention 
of plants, but their cultivation: plants 
themselves existed as part of the general 
order of nature. It thus appears that 
in Plato's scheme plants do not, like the 

inferior animals, arise by degeneration 
from the human form. For as soon as 
man was first created, he would have 
need of plants to provide him with sus- 
tenance. It would appear then that in 
the Platonic mythology the erring soul 
in the course of her transmigrations does 
not enter any of the forms of plant-life ; 
though the contrary was the belief of 
Empedokles ijdij ydp iror' ey& yevbuyv 
Kovpos re Kop-rj re \ OdfJivos T' otuvos re 
Kal elv a\l IXXoTros i\()vs. Martin how- 
ever is mistaken in inferring this con- 
clusion from the fact that plants possess 
only the third etSos of soul : this third 
elS^s is simply the one vital force acting 
exclusively through matter a degree of 
degeneracy to which any human soul, 
according to the theory of metempsy- 
chosis, might sink : indeed there are 
forms of what we call animal life, which 
are clearly within the limits of transmi- 
gration, but which possess little, if any, 
more independent activity of ^I'XTJ than 
do plants. The simultaneous appearance 
of mankind and of plants in the world, 
while all intermediate forms of animal 
life are absent, is curious, and could 
hardly, I think, be defended upon onto- 
logical grounds. 


[77 A- 

SevSpa /cal <f>vra teal a-Treppara jraiSevdevra VTTO yewpyias rt- 
Oacroos Trpos 7/irt<? f^X > 7r /^ I/ ^ *l v l^ova ra rwv aypiwv yevrj, 
Trpeo-ftvrepa rwv r)pepwv cvra. TTO.V jap ovi>, o ri irep av p.erda")(ri B 
TOV f)v, &5oi> [lev av ev Bitcy \eyoiro opdorara' yu.ere^et ye fj,rjv 

5 TOVTO, o vvv \eyofiev, TOV rpirov ^1/^779 etSovs, o fAeragv (f)pevv 
6fi(f)a\ov T IBpva'dai Aoyo?, w 86^rj<f jj,ev \oyio~/j.ov re Kal vov 
/ie'recrrt TO prjoev, aiV#r/o-e&K Se ^Seta? Kal aXyeivfjs yuera eiriOv- 
fjiiwv. ira<J")(ov yap Siar\ei Travra, a-Tpafyevrt, S' avry ev eavrw 
Trepl eavro, rrjv pev egwOev a-rrvxra^kvw icivrjo-iv, rfj S' oliceia 

10 xprjaa/jLevw, ru>v avrov rt \oyia-acr6ai, KariSovri, <pv<riv ov irapa- C 
BeBco/cev r\ yevecris. Sto BTJ %fj pev eari re ov% erepov twov, /j,6vi/j,ov 

10 avrov : O.VTOV A. tpfoiv : <f>tiffti. A. 

i. &TXC] i.e. attained the condition 
in which now they are. 

3. irdv yap oiv] This passage is of 
the highest importance, as proving be- 
yond controversy that Plato in the fullest 
degree maintained the unity of all life. 
He drew no arbitrary line between ' ani- 
mal' and 'vegetable' life: all things that 
live are manifestations of the same eter- 
nal essence: only as this evolved itself 
through countless gradations of existence, 
the lower ranks of organisms possess less 
and less of the pure activity of soul ope- 
rating by herself, until in plants and the 
lowest forms of animal life the vital force 
only manifests itself in the power of sen- 
sation and growth. 

Aristotle agrees with Plato in ascribing 
to plants fwi) and ^vxn, but he does not 
allow them afa^erts : see ak anima I v 
4iO b 23 <f>atvtTai -yap T<i tf>vra ^TJV oti^x ot>ra <f>op<i* xal cuV0i7<rewj : cf. II ii 
4i3 a 25, and tie partibus animalinm I i 
64 1 b 6. They had according to him the 
^I'X 1 ) alone: de anima II ii 
7 ffpeirriKov \tyopev rb TOIOVTOV 
TTJS yvxrjs ov Kal ra <f>vrd /j.erx el ' 
This coincides with Plato's statement. 
Aristotle however draws the distinc- 
tion between &Ja and <f>vra that the 
former possess afff6r)<ris, the latter pos- 
sess it not : de invent ute i 46 7 b 24 ra nlv 
fitv, OVK ?x 5' a'ffO-ijW T$ $' 

a.loOavtffda.1. TO ffov irpbs TO /XT) fyov 5to- 
plfo/jLev. See however hist. anim. vm i. 
In the pseudo-Aristotelian treatise de 
f lands i 8is b 16 it is affirmed that 
Anaxagoras Empedokles and Demokri- 
tos attributed thought and knowledge to 
plants : 6 5^ 'Avo^cryopaj Kal 6 Aij/xo/cptros 
*cai 6 'E/itTreSoKX^s KOI vovv Kal yvuviv tl- 
irov ^x et>r Ta < t>w'& ' they of course as- 
signed them ^Tri0vfj.ia and atff&rjffis also : 
ibid. 8i5 a 15 'Ava^ayopas pv o$v Kal 
ri6v/j:ia TO.VTO. KivtlffBai. \t- 
alffOdveadaL Tf Kal \vTreiff6ai Kal 
diafiefiaiovvTai. uv 6 'Aj/a|- 
ayopas Kal fipa elvai Kal rfitvOai Kal \v- 
TretffOai elirt, Trj re airoppori TUV <pv\\wv 
Kal Trj ai)7<rei TOVTO tK\a.p.fiavuv 6 3^ 
'E/x.?re5<M\i7S yvos tv TOUTOIS KeKpantvov 
tlvai edoS-affev. Sextus Empiricus adv. 
math. VIII 286 confirms the statement 
that Empedokles allowed reason to plants: 
TrdvTa yap laQi (ppivtjffiv tx eiv Ka * 'w/iaros 
alffav. Diogenes of Apollonia was of a 
contrary opinion : Theophrastos de sensu 
44 TO. d (pvTa 5ta TO /XT; elvai Koi\a 
(jLr)dc dcaS^eir^at TOV dtpa Tro^reXuSj d<f>rj- 
prj<r6ai TO <ppovelv. In our estimate of 
such statements however we must allow 
for the fact that these early philosophers 
only very imperfectly distinguished be- 
tween aiffddvfffffat and <f>povfiv : Theo- 
phrastos says of Parmenides TO ydp 
Kal TO (ppovfiv us Tavro \ty(t : 




the cultivated trees and plants and seeds, which are now trained 
by culture and domesticated with us ; but formerly there existed 
only the wild kinds, which are older than the cultivated. For 
indeed everything which partakes of life may with perfect 
justice and fitness be termed an animal; but the kind of which 
we are now speaking shares only the third form of soul, which 
our theory says is seated between the midriff and the navel, and 
which has nothing to do with opinion and reasoning and 
thought, but only with sensation, pleasant or painful, with 
appetites accompanying. For it ever continues passively re- 
ceptive of all sensations, and having its circulation in itself 
about its own centre, it rejects all motion from without and uses 
only its own ; but its nature has not bestowed upon it any power 
of observing its own being and reflecting thereon. Wherefore 
it is indeed alive and in no wise differs from an animal, but it is 

and this is no doubt still more true of 

7. alcr0T]crtos 8f| The OpeirriKiq 5(5- 
ra/uts, though not explicitly mentioned 
here, is of course included, as we see 
from the account of the rpirov etSos in 
70 D foil. 

8. ira<rxov -yap SiarcXci iravra] i.e. 
it passively submits to the influences 
which work upon it : since it does not 
possess the two more active forms of 
soul, the passive conditions of nutrition 
growth and decay, together with sensa- 
tion, are all that belong to it. 

<rrpa<|>^VTi 8* avrw tv avr<3] That is 
to say, its motions, e.g. the circulation 
of the sap, take place within it : its 
movement is not Kara T^TTOV, but iv 

9. Tqv jxiv ?0ev airera.(x^vw] It 
rejects motion from without and avails 
itself of its own innate force: that is, its 
growth is not due to any external com- 
pulsion, but the development of its own 
impulse. As Aristotle would put it, a 
plant has its proper motion Kara <f>v<nv, 
the motion IfaOtv only Kara ffv^e^rjK^. 
Plato means that it avro avrl> KIVCI and 
therefore must possess if'vxy, which alone 

is self-moved. 

10. TCOV avroC TI Xoyi<ra<r0ai Kan- 
SdvTi <j>v(Tiv] i.e. it is conscious, but not 
self-conscious. Man can look into his 
own consciousness and realise his own 
identity and personality : he can speculate 
upon his relation to other personalities 
and to the sensible objects around him. 
The plant can do none of this : it can 
but take its sensations as they come, 
without inquiring what they are, what 
it is that feels them, what is the line of 
continuity that binds them together. The 
meaning of this phrase is plain enough ; 
but the expression of it is a little strange. 
There is an overwhelming preponderance 
of ms. evidence in favour of <f>v<Tfi, and I 
am not sure that it ought not to be re- 
stored : Schneider however is alone, I 
believe, in adopting it. 

1 1. Ifori T ov\ 'trtpov UK>V] It would 
seem a necessary consequence that a thing 
which fjj is ffiov : and Aristotle is per- 
haps somewhat inconsistent in allowing 
plants fSJi>, while refusing them the title 
of f<jJa. Also Plato seems more scientific 
than Aristotle in attributing atffUr)<ns to 
plants. What manner of a.toOi)ais be- 
longs to plants may or may not be dis- 



[77 c 

Be Kal KaTeppia)fj,vov TreTrrjye Bid TO rijs v<^ eavTOv 

XXXV. Tavra 8/7 TO, yevrj Travra (frvreixravTes ol 
rot? ijTToaiv rjpJiv Tpo<piji>, TO croo/za avTO r/pdav Stw^ereva-av rep- 

Si VOVTe<S olov V KrjTTOlS O^TOV<f, iVO, UHTTTfp 6K I/Of/iaTO? TTl6vTO$ 

apBoiTO. Kal irpwTov p,ev o^eroi)? Kpv<f)aiov<} VTTO Tr}v %vp.$>vcrtv D 
TOV BepfJiaTos Kal TTJS aapKos Bvo <^Xe/3a? ere/noi/ vatTialas BiBv- 
/Ltoy?, <w 9 TO crwfj-a eTvy^ave Beiol$ re Kal dpicrTepois ov ravTa<f 
Be KaBtjKav irapa TTJV pdx iv /fa * r v jovi^ov fiera^v Xa/Sovre? 
10 fAve\6v, I'va OVTGS re o rt /iaXitrra 0d\\oi, Kal 7rl raXXa evpovs 
evTevdev are eirl /caravre? 1} eVt'^fO't? <yi<yvofj.evr) Trape^ot rrjv 
vBpeiav o/j.a\iji'. peTa Be Tavra a^iaavTes "Trepl Tr)v Ke<f)a\r)v 
ra? ^>Xe'/3a9 Kal Bi d\\TJ\a)v eVavrta? TrXe^a^re? Bieto-av, ra? pev E 
ex TOUV Be^idSv e7rl TapicrTepd TOV (Ttw/Aaro?, ra? 8' e/c roof a/ 

6 Kpv(f>aiovs : Kpv<f>a.iw$ A. 7 Si 

: SlSv/tovSZ. 14 rapurrfpa.: ra apurrepd S. 

covered or discoverable by science ; but 
it seems at least improbable that any- 
where a hard and fast line can be drawn 
between the afoOrjins of animals, from 
man down to the zoophyte, and the cor- 
responding 7rci0os in plants. Plato here 
as everywhere in his system preserves the 
principle of continuity, the germ of which 
he inherited from Herakleitos, and which 
attained so astonishing a development 
in his hands. Brief as is Plato's treat- 
ment of the subject, the union of poetical 
imagination and scientific grasp which it 
displays renders this short chapter on 
plants singularly interesting. And but 
for it, we should have been forced in- 
ferentially to fill up a space in his theory, 
for which we now have the authority of 
his explicit statement. 

I. TTJS v<|>' tavTOU Kivqo-ccos lartpTJ- 
<rOai] This is not inconsistent, though at 
first sight it may appear so, with TJJ oiKcig. 
Xp^ffafj^vif above. For there the question 
was of motion tv rep a6r$, now it is of 
motion from place to place. The plant is 
free to carry on all its natural movements 
within its own structure, but it is incap- 
able of transferring itself from place to 
place. Yet this stationary condition is 

no reason for refusing it the name of 
ftfov : for indeed the /co<r/uoj itself has its 
motion only tv T$ curry. Galen evidently 
had r^s e tavrov, for he proposes to read 
w : ivevo-rjffa. \eiireiv rb u crToiXfiov, ypa- 
^airos TOV nXarwfos Sid TO TT?J tu iav- 
TOV. The emendation does him credit: 
but there is no reason for interfering with 
our present text. 

77 c 79 A, c. xxxv. Then the gods 
made two channels down the body, em- 
bedded in the flesh, one on either side of 
the spine, to irrigate it with blood : 
and at the head they cleft the veins and 
caused them to cross each other trans- 
versely, that the head might be firmly 
fixed on the neck, and that communica- 
tion might be preserved between both 
sides of the body. This scheme for the 
irrigation of the body we shall best un- 
derstand, if we reflect that all substances 
composed of finer particles exclude those 
of coarser, while the coarser are easily 
penetrated by the finer. So then when 
food and drink enter the belly, they 
' are retained ; but fire and air are too 
subtle to be confined therein. Therefore 
the gods wove a web of fire and of air 
spread over the cavity of the body and 



stationary and rooted fast, because it has been denied the power 
of self-motion. 

XXXV. Thus did the higher powers create all these kinds 
as sustenance for us who were feebler; and next they made 
canals in the substance of our body, as though they were 
cutting runnels in a garden, that it might be irrigated as by an 
inflowing stream. And first they carried like hidden rills, under 
the place where the skin and the flesh are joined, two veins 
down the back, following the twofold division of the body into 
right and left. These they brought down on either side of the 
spine and the seminal marrow, first in order that this might be 
most vigorous, next that the current might have an easy flow 
downwards and render the irrigation regular. After that, they 
cleft the veins around the head, and interweaving them crossed 
them in opposite directions, carrying these from the right side of 
the body to the left and those from the left to the right. This 

placed therein two lesser webs opening 
into the mouth and nostrils. And they 
made alternately the great web to flow 
towards the lesser webs, and again the 
lesser towards the greater. In the former 
case the airy envelope of the greater 
web penetrated through the porous sub- 
stance of the body to the cavity within, 
in the latter the lesser webs passed 
through the body outwards; and in 
either case the fire followed with the 
air. This alternation is kept up per- 
petually so long as a man lives, and we 
give it the name of respiration. And so 
when the fire, passing to and fro, en- 
counters food and drink in the stomach, it 
dissolves them and driving them onwards 
forces them to flow through the veins, like 
water drawn into pipes from a fountain. 

3. ol KptCrrovs] Plato several times 
applies this phrase to supernal powers : 
cf. Sophist 216 B rdx' &" &" Ka ^ ff l TIS 
oCros rwf KpeiTrtivdw aiWirorro, (f>a6\ovs 
ij/uas 6vTas iv rots \6yots 

last passage being ironical. 

4. T^|l.VOVTS...OXt TO VS] Cf. 7 D T '? s 

dprrjplas 6xerovs Ivl rov ir\ev/jLova. trefiov. 

7. 8wo 4>Xpas] The two ' veins ' are, 
according to Martin, the aorta and the 
vena cava. 

8. Seiois T KO.I dpicrrfpois ov] i.e. 
with right and left sides : I doubt whe- 
ther pepefftv is to be supplied, any more 
than fdpy with the phrases tirl 5ei<, ^TT' 

Symposium 188 D TOJS Kpflrroffiv 

Oeois: Euthydimiis 291 A /ti} TIS TUV 

v Trapwv avrd. t<f>6tyl;a.TO : the 

P. T. 

9. riv yovi|xov...|xvX.6v] cf. 73 C. 

ii. trl Koiravres] As Galen objects, 
this seems to leave out of sight the circu- 
lation of the blood in the head and neck, 
which would be Hvavres. 

14. K TUJV Sc^iuv TTL Tapiorcpd] 
Plato makes the blood-vessels belonging 
to the right side of the head pass to the 
left side of the body and vice versa for 
two reasons : first that the consequent 
interlacing of the veins might fasten the 
head (which we have seen to be destitute 
of vtvpa) firmly on the trunk ; secondly 
that the sensations might be conveyed 
from either side of the brain to the oppo- 
site side of the body, and so all parts of 
the body might be kept in communica- 




[77 E 

7T4 TO. Oe^lO, K\lVaVTS, 07T&><? SetT/iO"? a/itt T?7 K(j>a\f] 7T/30? 

TO o-wfia eir) perd TOV oepfiaTos, eVeiS?) vevpois OVK rjv KVK\W 
Kara Kopvfyrjv Trepiei\r]fjifjLvrj, KOI $1} Kal TO rwv alcrdrjcrewv irdOos 
tV a<' eKarepwv TWV fjieputv et? inrav TO crdSfj.a e"r) StaSiSo/jievov. 

5 TO 6" evTfvdev ijSr) TTjv vSpaywyiav Trapeatcevaaav rpo-rrw Tivl 
Toupoe, 6V Karo-^r6fJ,0a paov 7rpo$io/jLO\oyr)crd/j,voi TO TOiovSe, OTI 73 A 
TraWa, 'ocra e eKaTTovwv %vvicrTaTai, (TTeyei Ta fiei^a), TO, 8' etc 
fj,eiov(i)V Ta o-/JLiKpoTpa ov BvvaTaL' jrvp Be irdvTwv yevoov <rp,iKpo- 
/j-epecTTaTOv, Wev oY uSaTo? KOI yrjs depos TG KOL ocra eic TOVTCOV 

10 %vvi<TTaTai Sta^wpet /cat crTeyeiv ovoev UVTO SvvaTat. TOUTOV S>) 
Kal Trepl T^<? Trap' T^/^ti/ /coA,i'a<? BiavorjTeov, on criTia pev Kal 
TroTa oTav et? avTrjv epTrear) crTeyei, rrvev/j-a Be Kal irvp o-fiiKpo- B 
ftepecrTepa ovTa T^<? avTrjs ^va-Tacrecos ov BvvaTai. TOVTOIS oiv 
KaTexpr)a~aTO o 6eos efc TT)V CK T^? KoiXias eVt 

15 vSpeiav, 7r\eyfj,a e^ depos Kal TTU/JO? Glov ot KvpToi ^v 

4 diaSiS5fj.evoi> : Siadidov A. 

tion. The notion that the blood-vessels 
are wanted to fasten the head is of course 
erroneous ; the latter part of his theory, 
had nerves but been substituted for veins, 
is a nearer guess at the truth. 

5. TO 8' IvrtvOcv T|8rj] cf. Galen de 
plac. Hipp, et Plat, vm 706 TO t^v ofo 
d^pi Kal irvpl x/>f)<r0at T^J> <f>6crn> irpos 
irftf/tv TpO(f>7Js alfjidruffiv re Kal dvdSoaiv 
6p6<3s etp-rjTai, TO 8 1- avrwv ir\tyfj.a ye- 
yovtvai Kal (JLTJ dia S\wv Kpaffiv OVK^TI 
evaivu, KaOdirep ovdt TO irvp dvofudfeiv 
avTbv [? ai)r6], fvov, wj'IwTro/fpaT?;?, ?jj.<j>v- 
TOV Oeptibv. The principle that smaller 
particles can pass through the interstices 
of larger ones, while the larger cannot 
penetrate the smaller, is thus applied by 
Plato to explain the process of digestion : 
the nutriment swallowed must on the one 
hand have a receptacle provided which is 
able to contain it, while on the other 
hand it must be subjected to the action 
of fire. The walls of the receptacle are 
therefore constructed of material suffi- 
ciently fine to retain the food, but not 
fine enough to arrest the passage of fire 
and air : the two latter therefore are 

enabled to circulate freely through the 
substance and lining of the body and to 
act upon the food contained within it. 
It will thus be seen that Plato conceives 
respiration solely as subsidiary to diges- 
tion : an opinion which is perhaps pe- 
culiar to him alone among ancient 
thinkers : the ordinary view being that 
its function was to regulate the tempera- 
ture of the body, as thought Aristotle : 
cf. de respiratione xvi 4j8 a 28 



Tavnjv 5 Troiflrai 5ia TT;J dj'aTrj'o^y. De- 
mokritos thought it served to keep up the 
supply of \k'xr? in the body : ibid, iv 
47 i b 30 foil. : not, Aristotle observes, 
that Demokritos conceived that Nature 
designed it for that end ; 6'\ws 70/5, uxnrep 
Kai ol aXXot <f>v<riKol, Kal OVTOS ovOlv airre- 
rai T-?;S Totairrr/s alrias. 

8. irvp 8^ iravTwv yevwv] Air seems 
more concerned with the process of respi- 
ration ; but we must remember that in 
Plato's view fire was the actual instru- 
ment of assimilating the food, and also 
that it was the agent which started the 

78 B] 



they did, partly in order that together with the skin they might 
form a bond to fasten the head to the body, seeing that it was 
not set round with sinews on the crown ; and also that this 
might be a means of distributing from each side throughout 
the whole body the sensation due to the perceptions. And 
next to this they designed the irrigation on a kind of plan 
which we shall better discern by assuming the following premises. 
All bodies which are composed of smaller particles exclude the 
larger, but the larger cannot exclude the smaller. Fire is com- 
posed of finer particles than any other element, whence it 
penetrates through water and earth and air and whatever is 
composed of them, and nothing can keep it out. This rule 
must also be applied to the human belly ; when food and 
drink enter into it, it keeps them in ; but air and fire, being 
finer than its own structure, it cannot keep in. Accordingly 
God used these two elements for the conveyance of liquid 
from the belly to the veins, weaving of air and fire a network 

air in its oscillations, cf. 79 D. Air then 
plays a part only subsidiary to fire. 

13. TOIJTOIS ovv KdTx.p'r l <raTo] He 
used fire and air (i) for the conversion of 
the food into blood, (2) for its convey- 
ance into the blood-vessels. 

15. irXey|ia < de'pos Kal irupos] This 
theory of respiration is by far the most 
obscure and perplexing of Plato's physio- 
logical lucubrations, partly owing to the 
enigmatical form in which it is expressed, 
partly to actual gaps in the exposition. 
An important light however is thrown 
upon it by a fragment of Galen's treatise 
on the Tiinaeus, which deals with this 
passage. This fragment, which was pre- 
viously known only in an imperfect Latin 
translation, was found by M. Daremberg 
in the Paris library and published by him 
in 1848. On Galen's commentary the 
ensuing explanation is based : I cannot 
however persuade myself that it fully 
clears up statements which Galen himself 
declares to be 8v<ri>(>r)Td re Kal dvaf^ra. 

First we must determine the meaning 
of KI//JTOS and t-yKtipriov. The first was a 
fishing-trap, or weel, woven of reeds ; it 

seems to have had a narrow funnel-shaped 
neck, through which the fish entered, but 
was unable to return, owing to the points 
of the reeds being set against it. (Martin 
conceives it to consist of two baskets, one 
fitting into the other ; but Galen says it is 
air\ovv.) The tyKvpnov a word which 
is only found in the present passage is 
explained by Stallbaum (whom Liddell 
and Scott follow) to mean the entrance or 
neck of the ncvpros. But on this point 
Galen is explicit : he says it is 6/j.otov ntv 
T<$ /jLeyd.\({), fj.iKpbi> St. We must therefore 
conceive the tyidprui to be two smaller 
Ki'/orot similar to the larger, contained 
within it and opening into its neck. 

Applying these premises, we shall find 
that the xupros or large irXtypa consists 
of two layers, one of fire, one of air. The 
outer layer (rt> KVTOS) is the stratum of air 
in contact with all the outer surface of 
the body ; the inner layer (TO h5ov rou 
ir\oKdvov) is the vital heat contained in 
the blood and pervading all the substance 
of the body between the skin and the 
cavity within. The two tyKvprta, which 
are formed entirely of air, represent re- 



[ 7 8 B- 

Bt,7r\d Kara rrjv euroSoi/ eyKvprta e%ov, wv Odrepov av ird\iv 
MKpow Kal drro rwv ejKvprlwv Brj Biereivaro olov 
KVK\W Bid Travrb? 777)09 rd ea-^ara rov TrX-ej^aro^. rd 
ev ovv evBov eK Trvpos avvear^aaro TOV irXoicdvov djravra, ra B* C 
5 ey/cvpria Kal ro /euro? aepoeiBr}, Kal \afBwv avro Trepiecrnjcre ra> 
&>a> rpoTrov rotovBe. ro fiev rwv e^Kvpriwv et? TO 
fi,e0fJK' Snr\ov Se oWo? avrov Kara /lev ra? dprypias els 
rov TrXevfiova KaOrjKe Odrepov, ro 8' el? rrjv KoiXlav trapd ra? 
dprrjpias. ro 8' erepov a^t'cra? TO /iepo? e/cdrepov Kara rovs 
10 o^erovt TT/? pivot dffrrJKe KOIVOV, axrO' ore fir) Kara a-rofj-a tot 
Bdrepov, e rovrov irdvra Kal rd Keivov pi>fj,ara dvan^X^poixrOai. D 
TO 8' aXXo Kvros rov Kvprov irepl TO crw/jia ocrov Kol\ov rjfjiuiv 
Treptifyvae, Kal irdv 8rj rovro rare (lev et> Ta eyKvpna j*vppelv 
fjt,a\aK<jus, are depa ovra, eTroiijcre, rore Se avappelv fj.ev rd ey- 
15 Kvpria, ro Be TrXeyfjia, co? 6Wo? TOU o^cw/iaTO? fj,avov, SveaOai etcra) 
Bi avrov Kal 7rd\tv e&>, Ta? Be evros rov jrvpos aKrlvas BtaBe- 

spectively the thoracic and abdominal 
cavities of the body : the first having a 
double outlet, one by the larynx, the 
other by the orifices of the nostrils : the 
second has one outlet only, through the 
oesophagus into the mouth. These preli- 
minaries laid down, we shall be able to 
understand more or less precisely the 
remaining statements in the chapter. Mar- 

a. upper eyKvpnov, opening into the mouth and 

bifurcating in the passages of the nostrils. 
3. lower iyKvpnov, opening into the mouth only. 

c. KVTO? rov ir\oicdvov, or stratum of air sur- 

rounding the body. 

d, TO. evSov TOV jrAoxai'ov, or the heat residing in 

the solid part of the body. 

tin's interpretation, which is most lucidly 
stated, would probably have been modi- 

fied had the commentary of Galen in the 
original been before him. 

I give a diagram, which, without aim- 
ing at anatomical accuracy, may perhaps 
help to elucidate Plato's meaning. 

i. SiirXd Kara TT}V frro8ov] i.e. 
having two separate entrances, the wind- 
pipe and the oesophagus, one to each 

2. 8iV\| Sfcpovv] The tyKvprtov 
occupying the cavity of the thorax he 
constructed with a double outlet, one by 
the larynx through the mouth, the other 
through the nostrils. 

SiereCvaro olov o*xovovs] Here Plato 
has departed somewhat from his analogy 
of the fishing-trap. The ff-xoivu of course 
represent the arteries and veins which 
permeate the structure of the body. 

3. TO, [Jiiv ovv ?v8ov IK irvpos] This 
is the inner layer of the Kvpros, which, as 
we have seen, consisted of the vital heat 
contained in the solid part of the body 
lying between the surrounding air and 
the tyKvpna, or cavities within. 

6. TO p.iv TO>V evKvprfov] Galen warns 
us against taking this ' one of the eyKvp- 
ria ', in which case, as he justly remarks, 

D] T1MAIO2. 293 

like a fish-trap or'weel, having two lesser weels within with a 
double inlet ; one of which inlets he again wove with two pas- 
sages ; and from the lesser weels he stretched as it were cords 
on all sides to the extremities of the network. All the inner 
part of the net he constructed of fire, but the lesser weels and 
the envelope he made of airy substance ; and he took the net 
and wrapped it in manner following about the animal he had 
moulded. The structure of the lesser weels he carried into the 
mouth : and, these being twofold, he let down one of them by 
the windpipe into the lungs, the other past the windpipe into 
the belly. The one weel he split in two, and let both inlets 
meet by the passages of the nostrils, so that when the first 
inlet was not in action by way of the mouth, all its currents also 
might be replenished from the second. But with the general 
surface of the network he enveloped all the hollow part of our 
body; and all this, seeing it was air, he now caused to flow 
gently into the lesser weels, now made them flow back upon it ; 
and since the body is of porous texture, the network passes 
through it inward and again outward, and the beams of fire 

Plato would have gone on ' rd 5 ds rode turn of air in contact with the body. 

TI TOV ffuiyuaros '. He understands ir\&- This first, penetrating through the porous 

KCLVOV, in which he is probably right. The substance of the flesh, flows through it 

subdivision of the ?rX6Kai'o' into the two into the cavity of the tyKvpria, the airy 

1-yKvpTia. begins at SnrXov 82 (>VTOS avrov. contents of which have passed up through 

7. TO.S <xpTT]pas]' See the note on the passages of respiration : presently the 
70 c. tyKvpria flow down again into the body, 

8. TO 8i els TTjv KoiX&xv] The other and the air that had come in through the 
tyKvpriov, occupying the abdominal cavity, flesh passes forth again by the way that 
had its outlet past the windpipe by way it came. The inner layer of the /cupros, 
of the oesophagus: this had only one which was formed of fire, also oscillates to 
opening. and fro, accompanying the motions of 

9. ri 8* eVcpov] The tjKvpriov which the airy envelope. And this oscillation 
occupied the chest had a twofold outlet, must ceaselessly continue so long as we 
one through the mouth, the other through live. There are then two modes by 
the nose ; and this latter was again di- which the air effects an entrance into the 
vided into the two channels of the nos- interior of the body : one by way of the 
trils. The object of this double outlet tubes and orifices constructed for that 
was to allow respiration to be carried on purpose ; the other through the substance 
through the nostrils when the passage by of the body, which is too porous to bar its 
way of the mouth was not working, that ingress, seeing that the flesh is partly 
we might not always have to open our constructed out of the coarser elements of 
mouths in order to breathe. water and earth. 

12. TO 8' dXXo KVTOS] i.e. the stra- 16. TeLs 81 CVTOS TOV irvpos dtcTivas] 



[ 7 8 D- 

aKo\ov0iv e<f> eKarepa Ibvros rov depos, Kal rovro, 
eaxnrep av ro 0vrjrov gvveo-rij KIJ %u>ov, firj Bia7raveo-0ai ryiyv6/J.e- E 
vov rovrp Be Bij TO> yevei rov rd<; eVwi/u/u'a? 0efjivov dvarrvorjv 
Kal eKTTVorjv \eyo/j,ev 0ecr0ai rovvo/j,a. rrdv Be Brj ro T' epyov 
5 Kal TO 7ra$o? rovO* rjpuiv rut <rca/j,ari yeyovev apBofievfo Kal 
0ai Kal %f)v orrorav jap e7&> Kal e'fw TT;? 
TO 7rvp ei/To? %vvr}fj,fjLevov eTrrjrai, BtaiwpovfAevov 
Be del Bid T^? AcotXta? elae^ov rd airia Kal irord \d/3y, riJKei 79 A 
BTJ, KOI Kara cr^iKpa Biaipovv, Bid rwv e^oBcov f/Trep Tropeverai 
10 Bidyov, olov eK Kprjvrfs CTT' o^eToi)? eVt Ta? <^>Xe/3a9 dvr\ovv avrd, 
peiv axnrep av\a>vo<> Bid rov <r<y/iaTO<? rd rmv <f)\ej3(av rroiel pevfj,ara. 
XXXVI. Tld\iv Be ro T^? dvarcvo^ iBajftev rrdOos, at9 

7 lov<rr)s : oCffi)t A. 

This is the same as ra ZvSov TOV irXoxdvov 
above : i.e. the ffn<f>vrov 0fp/j.6v, or vital 
heat residing in the substance of the 

3. dvairvoi^v Kal SKITVOTJV] Plato uses 
the word avairvori for what was later 
termed elffirvoiq, avawvor) being reserved 
for the whole process of ftinrvor) + tKirvoij. 
Aristotle uses dvairvo-rj similarly: de re- 
spiratione xxi 48o b 9 Ka\e?rat S' 17 
ftaodos TOV d^pos dvairvorj, ri 5' ^o5os 
tKirvoj). The dynamical cause of inspi- 
ration and expiration is explained in the 
next chapter. 

5. apSoplvu) Kal avai{ruxo}ilva>] It 
would appear from this that Plato did 
regard respiration as serving the purpose 
of tempering the vital heat of the body : 
but this is a merely secondary object ; its 
chief end being to effect the digestion of 
the food. 

6. TTJS avairvoTJs] Here avairvori is 
simply equivalent to the breath. 

8. 8ui TTJS KoiXCas turcXOov] The air 
and the fire which accompanies it, in 
the course of its oscillation to and fro, 
encounter the food which has been re- 
ceived into the body; and since it is 
composed of much finer particles than 
the latter, they penetrate and divide the 
food, converting it into blood (the red 
colour is due to the tinge imparted by 

1 ayXwTOj did : SC avXwvos S. 

fire as we find at 80 E) ; and then they 
drive the now fluid substance through 
the small vessels which they themselves 
permeate, and so pump it into the veins. 

ii. w<nrp avXwvos] The body is 
compared to an aqueduct through which 
the veins pass as pipes or conduits irri- 
gating all parts of it. The metaphor 
has become a little mixed here ; above 
the body was likened to the icrjiroi which 
had to be watered. 

79 A E, c. xxxvi. Let us more closely 
examine the conditions of the process 
described in the foregoing chapter. The 
cause of it is that there is no void space 
in the nature of things. Therefore when 
the breath issues forth of the mouth it 
thrusts against the neighbouring air, 
which transmits the impulse till it is 
received by the air in immediate contact 
with the body : this then forces its way 
in through the pores and replenishes the 
space within which the departing air 
leaves. Again this newly entered air, 
passing out once more through the pores 
of the body, in its turn thrusts the outside 
air and forces it to pass inward again 
through the passages of respiration to 
replenish the deserted space : and this 
process goes on continually, like a wheel 
turning to and fro. The cause of this 
oscillation is the vital heat which re- 

79 A] 



which are confined within follow the air as it moves in either 
direction : and this never ceases to go on so long as the mortal 
creature holds together. To this process he who appointed 
names gave, we say, the titles of inspiration and expiration : 
and from this condition, both active and passive, it has come 
about that our body, deriving moisture and coolness, has its 
sustenance and life. For when, as the respiration passes in and 
out, the interwoven fire within follows it and entering the belly 
swings up and down and meets the food and drink, it dis- 
solves them, and reducing them to small particles, drives them 
along the channels through which it flows, pumping them into 
the veins like spring-water into conduits, and so it makes the 
current of the veins flow through the body as through an 

XXXVI. Let us once more examine the process of respira- 

sides in the body. For the air within 
the body, being warmed thereby, rushes 
upward through the mouth and nose, and 
the cool air surrounding the body rushes 
in through the pores. Then this in its 
turn, becoming heated, rushes out through 
the pores, and the cool external air 
comes in through the passages of the 
breath. And thus a perpetual alternation 
of inspiration and expiration is kept up 
for the preservation of life. 

Plato's theory then depends (i) upon 
his principle of vepiuffa, by which he 
has explained the melting of metals &c, 
and by which in the next chapter he 
explains a variety of natural phenomena ; 
(2) upon the vibration of the vwodoxv, 
which causes every element to strive 
towards its proper situation in space. 

1 2. irdXtv 8^] Plato's account of respi- 
ration falls into two parts ; in the first 
he simply describes the process, in the 
second he points out the physical causes 
of it. His theory bears a certain resem- 
blance to that of Empedokles, which 
will be found in a passage quoted by 
Aristotle tie respiratione vi 473 b 9, 
275 299 Karsten. According to his 
statement, which is not very clear, the 

blood-vessels are only partially filled with 
blood ; and when the blood rushes one 
way, the air follows through the pores 
into the body; when the blood moves in 
the other direction, the air is again ex- 
pelled through the pores : this he illus- 
trates by the analogy of a girl playing 
with a clepsydra; she covers the mouth 
with her hand and then plunges the 
instrument in water : the air, detained in 
the vessel by her hand, will not suffer 
the water to enter through the perfo- 
rations; when she removes her hand 
the water enters at the bottom and expels 
the air through the mouth : similarly if 
the vessel is full of water, the air is 
unable to find entrance, but passes in 
as the water flows out. 

Aristotle criticises Plato's theory in tie 
respiratione v 472 b 6 foil. : it does not 
explain, he says, why only land animals 
breathe, or if fishes &c do so also, 
how they do it; again it assumes that 
^Kirvorj is prior to elffirvoy, the contrary 
being the case; ylvtrai yap TO.VTO. 
Trap' aXXTjXa, reXeirraWes 5 tKWvtovGiv, 
WOT' avayKalov tlvai Tyv apx^v elffirvor/v. 
Aristotle's own mechanical explanation 
is given in de rcsp. xxi 480* 16. More 

296 HAATHNOS [79 A- 

fievov atTtais TOIOVTOV lyeyovev, olovTrep ra vvv ecrriv. coo" ovv. 
eireiBr) Kevov ovBev e&Tiv, et? o TWV fapofjievwv BvvaiT* av el<re\6elv B 
TI, TO Be TTvevfjia <f>epeTai Trap 1 rjfjiwv ea>, TO fiSTa TOVTO rjBrj iravTl 
Bf}\ov, a><> OVK et? Kevov, d\\d TO 7r\r)(riov etc Trjs eSpas a>0el' TO 

5 8' coOovaevov e^e\avvei TO 7r\rjcriov dei, Kal Kara TavTqv TTJV 
dvdyKrjv irdv irepiekavvo^evov et? TTJV eopav, offev ef)\9e TO 
Trvev/Jia, eio-tov e/ceio-e Kal dvcnr\ripovv avTrjv j-vvifreTat TW irvev- 
fjidTi, Kal TOVTO /ia irav olov Tpo^ov irepia'^o^evov ryijverai Bid 
TO Kevov firjSev elvat,. Bio Brj TO TWV o-TTjOoov Kal TOV TrXei 'fjiovos C 

10 e&> jjieOiev TO irvevpa 7rd\ii> VTTO TOV irepl TO crcoyua ae/jo?, etao) 
Bid fj,ava)v TV crapKutv Bvopevov Kal 7repie\.avvofji,evov, yiyveTat, 
TrXijpes" aiOis Be diroTpeTro/Aevos 6 drjp Kal Bid TOV crcw/iaro? e^co 
lutv etcrft) TTJV draTTvorjv Trepiwdei KaTa TTJV TOV (rrd/Aaro? KOI Trjv 
TWV fivKTr]pwv BloBov. Ttjv Be aiTiav Trjs 0/3%']? avTaJv 6eTeov 

15 Tr/vBe' irdv %wov eavTov rai/ro? Tiepl TO alp.a Kal ra? 0Xe/3a9 D 
OepfjioTaTa e%et, olov ev eavTat 7rr)yr)v Tiva evovaav TTU/JO?' o Bi] 
Kal 7rpoo~iKao/jiev T&> TOV KVpTov TT\e^fji,aTi, KaTa fjie<rov BiaTe- 
Tajj,evov CK TTfpo? 7re/TX.e^^at irdv, TO, Be d\\a, 'QUO, ej;a)0v, aepo?. 
TO OepfAov Br) KaTa <f)vo~iv elf TTJV avTov ^wpav ea) ?rpo9 TO 

20 gwyyeves 6fJ.o\oyrjTeov levai' Bvoiv Be Tatv Bie^oBoiv ovcraiv, r^9 
pev KaTa TO aw^a ego), T^? Be av KaTa TO aTOpa Kal ra<? pivas, E 
oTav fiev eVt daTepa op/Aijo-rj, 6aTpa Trepiwdel' TO Be 

9 rb ante TOV ir\e6/j.ovos dant SZ. 15 lavrov: avroj SZ. 

Tiros : ITWTWJ A. 16 6epfj.6ra.Ta: Sep/toryTa A. 20 8vow : Svew S. 

cogent arguments against the Platonic cavity which it quits. 
account are adduced by Galen de plac . 8. Tpo\oi5 ircpia^yo^vov] The 'wheel' 

Hipp, et Plat, vni 708 foil. ; his chief does not move in continuous revolution, 

objection being that Plato ignores respi- but alternately describes first a semicircle 

ration as a voluntary action ; also Galen forward then a semicircle backward usque 

prefers O\(CTJ to irepluffis as its cause. a:i infinitiim: cf. Galen de plac. VIII 

6. irpi\avv6(Xvov] The outside air 711. 

receives as a whole an impulse from the 14. TTJV Si airwxv TTJS apx^s] Hither- 

breath essaying to issue forth. Now the to the irepiu<ns has been the physical law 

only region in which it is possible for alleged ; now comes in the other prin- 

it to yield to this impulse is that which ciple, the vibration of the viroSox'ri, which 

is being vacated by the issuing air. It is the primary motive power producing 

matters not therefore in what direction respiration. The original motion is due 

the originating impulse is given : if room to the fire within the body which con- 

is to be found outside the body for the stitutes its vital heat. The air within 

breath as it comes forth, it must be by the eyKvpria, coming in contact with this 

an equal quantity of air entering the fire, becomes heated ; that is, is mingled 

E] TIMAIO2. 297 

tion and the causes which have led to its present conditions. 
These are as follows. Since there is no void into which any 
moving body could enter, and since the breath issues forth 
from us, the consequence is clear to every one : instead of 
entering into a void space it thrusts the neighbouring matter out 
of its place. And this, yielding to the thrust, drives before it 
that which is immediately nearest ; and all being driven round 
by this compulsion enters into the place whence the breath 
came forth, and replenishing the same follows after the breath ; 
and this whole process goes on like the rotation of a wheel, 
because there is no void. Therefore when the cavity of the 
chest and the lungs send forth the breath, they are again re- 
plenished by the air surrounding the body, which penetrates 
inwards through the flesh, seeing it is porous, and is forced 
round in a circuit. And again when the air returns and passes 
forth through the body, it thrusts the breath back again in- 
wards through the passages of the mouth and nostrils. The 
cause which sets this principle in action we may describe thus. 
In every animal the inner parts about the blood and veins are 
the hottest, as if there were a fount of fire contained in it. This 
is what we compare to the network of the weel, supposing 
that all the part extending from the middle to the sides 
is woven of fire, but the outer part of air. Now we must 
admit that the heat naturally tends outwards to its own region 
and its own kin. And whereas there are two means of egress, 
one out through the body, the other by way of the mouth and 
nostrils, when it makes for one exit, it impels the air round 
towards the other. And the air so impelled falling into the fire 

with fire. Now fire, as we know, ever body is forced into the body by the other 
seeks to escape upwards to its own region ; entrance. The original impulse then is 
therefore the mixture of air and fire is given by the fire in the body seeking 
impelled to quit the body in search of to escape to its own kindred element, 
its own kind. This it may do by either 17. Trpo<rei.Kdo(iv TU> TOV Kvprou 
of two outlets by penetrating through ir\y|um.] This seems sufficiently to con- 
the porous substance of the body, or by firm the explanation of the Ki'proj given- 
passing upward through the respiratory above, and the identification of the inner 
passages. Whichever of these passages layer thereof with the vital heat which 
it selects, it thrusts against the air by means of the blood-vessels pervades 
outside, and each particle of air pressing all the substance of the body, 
upon its neighbour, the air nearest the 



[79 E- 

64? TO TTVp JJ,7TlirTOV 6pfJMlVTai, TO S' J;IOV ^V^Tai. 

j3a\\ovo~r)<s Se T^<> deppoTriTos Kal TWV Kara Ttjv CTepav e^oSov 
0p/j,oTpa)v yiyvofjievcov f jrd\iv exeivr) peTrov av TO 
/j,d\\ov, 7T/J09 Tr)v avTov <f)vo~iv <J)p6fJ,evov, TrepiwOel TO 
5 6aTepa' TO Be ra aura iraayov Kal ra aura dvTaTroBioov dft, 
KVK\OV OVTCO o~a\ev6/Jivov cvOa Kal evOa djreipyacrfjiei'ov I;TT' 
d/JL(f>oTepcov Trjv dvaTrvor/v Kal eKTrvofjv yiyveadat Trape^erai. 

XXXVII. Kal Brj Kal TO. TWV Trepl Ta? laTpiKas a//a'a<? 
TraOijfAaTcav aiTia Kal TO. Trjs KaTaTroaecas TO, re TU>V>v, 80 A 
10 ocra d(pe0i>Ta fJ.TQ)pa Kal oa~a 7rl yfjs (frepeTai, TavTrj BiwKreov, 
Kal OOOL (pdoyyot ra^et? re Kal yS/jaSet? ofet? re Kal /3apet? 

6 K\JK\OV I KlJK\(p S. 

whereupon the irep/awis sends a current of 
air down the respiratoiy passages. Then 
precisely the same process takes place at 
the other entrance : the air that entered 
through the trachea is warmed, and like- 
wise seeks to escape by the nearest out- 
let, viz. the trachea. Thus the air that 
passes into the body by either entrance is 
always impelled to return by that same 
entrance and not by the other. But this 
part of the theory is both obscure and un- 
satisfactory, unless some better interpre- 
tation of it can be found. Plato's hypo- 
thesis, it will be observed, renders the 
process entirely independent of any mus- 
cular action of the body; and Galen's 
criticism is pertinent: iv ovSertpq. 5 av- 
rG)v o llXdruv irpojxprfrai riy irpocupfofi, 
KO.ITOI <pavep<3s tv 6vros nai TO OO.TTOV 
Kal f3pa.8vT(pov HXaTrbv TS Kal irXtov Kal 
irvKvoTtpov eiairvtvffai re /cot (KirvfVffai. 

79 A 80 C, c. xxxvii. The same prin- 
ciple of circular impulsion will account 
for the action of cupping-glasses, for the 
process of swallowing, for the motion of 
projected bodies, whether through the air 
or along the ground, and for the conso- 
nance of high and deep notes, which is 
produced by the gradual retardation of 
the swifter sound until it coincides with 
the motion of the slower. To the same 
cause is due the flowing of water, the 
falling of the thunderbolt, and the force 

I . |iTapaXXov<n]S Si TT^S 6p|xoT]Tos] 

So far as the theory has yet been set 
forth, no reason has been assigned why 
the heated air escapes alternately through 
the respiratory passages and through the 
pores of the body; the wheel might 
always turn in the same direction. Plato 
now endeavours to supply a cause for this : 
but it must be confessed that, if I rightly 
apprehend his meaning, it is a very in- 
adequate one : however it seems to be as 
follows. Let us suppose the process to 
be at this point, that the heated air in 
the eyKvpria has just passed up through 
the trachea into the outer atmosphere; 
accordingly the cool stratum of air sur- 
rounding the body has passed in through 
the pores to supply its place. Now why 
should this newly entered air, when it in 
its turn is heated and endeavours to es- 
cape, return through the body instead of 
following its predecessor up the trachea? 
The reason assigned is this: the warm 
air on passing forth out of the mouth or 
nostrils finds itself plunged in the cool 
atmosphere without; at the same time 
the air newly arrived in the body is 
heated. The preponderance of warmth 
is now in the neighbourhood of the outlet 
through the flesh: the heated air there- 
fore seeks the nearest and easiest way of 
escape by passing outward through the 
pores of the body, as it had entered; 

8o A] 



is heated, but that which passes out is cooled. So the heat 
changes its position and the parts about the other outlet be- 
come warmer ; therefore the heat now has a stronger tendency in 
the new direction, seeking its own affinity, and impels the air by 
the other passage : and this, undergoing the same change and 
reproducing the same process, is thus by these two impulses 
converted into a wheel swaying backwards and forwards, and so 
it gives rise to respiration. 

XXXVII. In the same direction are we to look for the 
explanation of the phenomena of medical cupping-glasses and 
of swallowing and of projected bodies, whether cast through the 
air or moving along the ground ; and of sounds too, which 
from their swiftness and slowness seem to us shrill or deep, 

of attraction exercised by amber and the 
loadstone. All these diverse phenomena 
are due to the manifold interaction of 
these two principles the absence of void, 
which is the cause of the circular impul- 
sion, and the vibratory motion which 
causes every substance to strive towards 
its own peculiar region in space. 

8. irtpl TOS larpiKas criKvas] Plato 
now applies his two great dynamical 
principles to the explanation of various 
natural phenomena. He does not work 
out the mode of their operation in detail, 
but leaves that to be done by the reader. 
A full commentary on the present chapter 
will be found in Plutarch quaestiones 
platonicae vii. The explanation of the 
cupping instruments is this. When the 
cup is applied to the flesh, the air within 
it becomes warmed and consequently di- 
lated ; and escaping through the pores of 
the metal, it thrusts the surrounding air, 
which in its turn, pressing on the surface 
of the body, forces the humours to exude 
into the cup : cf. Timacits Locnis 102 A. 

9. TO. TTJS Ka,Tair6<rws] The food, 
propelled downwards by the muscles of 
the throat, thrusts the air in front of it : 
this, escaping through the pores, thrusts 
the air outside, which by the nepiu<ris 
presses upon the food from behind and 
pushes it downward: and since at every 

moment of its progress more air is dis- 
placed to set the ireplkxris in motion, the 
downward impulse is continually main- 

TO, T TWV pnrTOV|A^Vv] TllC prO- 

cess is the same here as in the preceding 
instance : if a stone is hurled through the 
air, the air displaced in front of the stone 
sets up a Treplwffis which impels it behind 
and keeps it going. The problem which 
seemed to the ancient thinkers to demand 
solution was, when the stone has left the 
hand of the thrower and consequently is 
no longer directly receiving any propul- 
sion from it, what is it that keeps the 
stone moving? what enables it to with- 
stand the force of gravitation which 
would otherwise cause it to fall perpen- 
dicularly earthward ? A clear understand- 
ing of the point of view from which this 
question was regarded will be gained 
from Aristotle physica vin x 266 b 27 foil. 
Aristotle, who seems to adopt Plato's ex- 
planation, remarks that the propelling 
hand communicates to the stone not only 
passive motion, but an active power of 
moving the air before it: it ceases to be 
Kivovft.fvov at the moment it leaves the 
hand (relatively to the hand, Aristotle 
should have added), but remains mvovv 
so long as it is in motion. 

n. Kal 80-01 4>0oyyoi] It is not at 



[80 A 

<f)aivovrat, rore ptv dvappocrroi, fapo/Jievoi Si dvofioiorrjra T<? 

fv rjiuv UTT' avrwv Kiv)')o~e(i)s, Tore Se ^v^wvoi &t 6/j,otorrjra. ra<> 

jap ru>v TTporepwv Kal darrovwv ol ftpabvrepoi, Kivrfcreis dirorravo- 

' fj,evas rjSr) re et? o/j,oiov e\ij\v0via<t, al? tcrrepov avrol Trpocrfapo- B 

5 pevoi Kivovcriv e'/cetW?, Kara\a/j,/3dvovcri, KaraXanftdvovres 8e OIK 
aXXrjv 7Tfj,/3d\\ovre<; dverdpa^av Kivr)<nv, aXX,' dpxf)v fipa&vrepas 
(f)opd$ /card rr)V rf}<f Qdrrovos d7ro\T)yovo~r)s 8e ofjioiorrjra 7rpo<r- 
dtyavres lilav ef o^eta? teal /3a/?ef'a<? %vveKepdaavro TrdOijv odev 
rjSovrjv jj,ev rot? a(j)pocriv, ev^pocrvvrji' 8e rot? e/j.^poo'i Sid -rrjv 

10 T^9 Oeias dp/jiovias ^l^friv ev dvrjTals <yevop,evriv <f>opai<; 7rapecr%ov. 
Kal 8rj Kal ra TWV iBdrwv Trdvra pev^ara, ert, 8e rd TV Kepavvwv G 
irro)fiara KOI rd 6avfj,a6fj,eva r}Xe/tTpa>i/ Trepl r//? eX^ew? Kal 

first obvious how the principle of irept- 
axm applies here. But I think it is clear 
that Plato does not mean the irepiwcris 
to account for the consonance of different 
sounds, but only for their propagation 
from the sounding body to the ear. This 
is effected in exactly the same way as the 
projection of a stone through the air. 
Sound is produced by the vibration of a 
certain body of air, or of some other con- 
ducting medium : it is propagated by the 
transmission of this vibration, or rather, 
on Plato's theory, of this viorating body 
of air through the atmosphere; for it, 
like the stone, displaces the air in front, 
which keeps perpetually rushing in and 
propelling it behind. This interpreta- 
tion differs from that given by Plutarch 
quaestiones platonicae vii 9, which is, I 
think, unquestionably erroneous. He 
supposes the Treplucris to account for the 
consonance of high and deep notes, and 
explains it thus: the acuter sound, travel- 
ling faster than the deeper, strikes first 
upon the ear ; then passing round by the 
n-epiuffis, but with gradually diminishing 
speed, it overtakes the slower, and as- 
similating its motion to that of the latter 
reaches the ear again along with it : 6 drj 
<T(f>6Spa Kal avvTbvtas trXyyfis irpofffj.lyvv<ri 
TTJ d/coj 7iy>a5ros, elra vepttuv irdXiv Kal 
KaTa\a/j.@dt><i>v rbv fipaSvrepov ffwiirtTai. 
Kal avfiTrapaTT^/jLTTfi. TTJP ai<T0T]ffu>. But 

there are grave objections to be brought 
against this: (i) it is a totally illegitimate 
use of the ir(plw<ru: it is as if a stone 
hurled in the air should describe a circular 
orbit; (2) Plutarch makes the swifter 
sound overtake the slower; but Plato dis- 
tinctly speaks of the slower overtaking 
the swifter, when the latter is relaxing its 
speed. If however we suppose the irtpi- 
uffis to be accountable merely for the 
transmission of the sounds, the explana- 
tion as above is quite plain and simple ; 
and for the consonance it is not wanted. 
Compare Aristotle de audibilibus 8o4 a 4 

2. rels Y^P T v irpor^pwv] The cause 
of consonance, according to Plato, is this. 
If a high and a low note be sounded to- 
gether, the high note, which travels more 
swiftly through the air, will reach the 
ear first and communicate its vibrations 
to it. Presently the deeper note arrives. 
But by that time the vibrations of the 
higher note, which have been gradually 
becoming slower, are synchronous with 
the vibrations added by the deeper note, 
and a consonance ensues. If the vibra- 
tions of the higher note have not slacken- 
ed down to the speed of the lower, dis- 
cord is the result instead of concord : 
thus if we strike simultaneously two notes 
at the interval of a semitone, a sharp dis- 
cord is produced, because the two sounds 




sometimes having no harmony in their movements owing to the 
irregularity of the vibrations they produce in us, sometimes 
being harmonious through regularity. For the slower sounds 
overtake the motions of the first and swifter sounds, when 
these are already beginning to die away and have become 
assimilated to the motions which the slower on their arrival 
impart to them : and on overtaking them they do not produce 
discord by the intrusion of an alien movement, but adding the 
commencement of a slower motion, which corresponds to that 
of the swifter now that the latter is beginning to cease, they 
form one harmonious sensation by the blending of shrill and 
deep. Thereby they afford pleasure to the foolish, but to the 
wise joy, through the imitation of the divine harmony which is 
given by mortal motions. And the flowing of all waters, the 
fall of thunderbolts, and the wonderful attracting power of 

are so nearly of the same pitch that the 
lower reaches the ear before the higher 
has had time to slacken at all. It is evi- 
dent from Plato's language that he con- 
ceived the acuter sound both to travel 
more swiftly through the air and to have 
more rapid vibrations: he thus comes 
very near the correct explanation of pitch, 
but falls into the not unnatural error of 
supposing that the more rapid vibration 
causes a swifter progress through the air. 
His theory of consonance is entirely un- 
satisfactory: apart from any other objec- 
tion, the process he describes could only 
produce unison, not concord. For he 
cannot mean merely that the swifter vi- 
brations slackened clown so as to produce 
a due numerical ratio to the slower, since 
such a numerical ratio might have as well 
existed at first. It is strange that Plato, 
with his fondness for dt>a\oyia, should not 
have based harmony of accords upon this. 
It will be observed that the principle of 
irfpiwffis is in no way concerned with the 
present hypothesis. 

9. i]8ovi]v (i^v rots a<J>po<riv] See note 
on 47 D. The l^povts enjoy music 
because they recognise that it is based 
on the same harmonic ratios as are found 

in the soul : in plainer language, because 
it expresses to the ear truths of the un- 
seen world. For ev<ppo<rvi>r)v compare 
Cratylus 419 D iravrl yap 5rj\ov ws airb 
TOV ev 6V rots TT pay na<r iv TTJV ^vx^v vfj.- 
(f>tpf06at rovro Act/Se TO 6vofj.a, fvipfpo- 
ativrjv. The word expresses a calm en- 
joyment, different from the undisciplined 
pleasure of the multitude, the aireipos 
ijdovr) beloved of Philebus. 

n. rd TWV v>8aTwv ircivTa pcvfiara] 
The cause of the flowing of water is 
pretty much the same as that alleged in 
58 E for the flowing of molten metal, 
except that here we have to assume the 
original impulse, which there is explained. 
It seems strange that Plato makes no 
use here of the force of gravitation : per- 
haps that is assumed as obviously aux- 
iliary; and this chapter is but an exceed- 
ingly brief summary. 

TWV Kcpavvwv irTtofiaTa] The action 
in this instance is precisely identical 
with that in the case of the projection of 
a stone through the air. 

12. rot 9av|Aaon.tva ijX^KTpwv] The 
explanation given by Plutarch is as fol- 
lows. Amber contains within it some- 
thing <j>\oyoti5ts TI wv{v/J.a.TtK&r, a rare and 



[80 c 

'HpaK\id)v \i0o)V, irdvTwv TOVTWV 6\icr) jj,ev ov/c e<rriv ovBevi 
7TOT, TO Be K.GVOV elvai fjirjBev ireptwOelv re avrd ravra 619 a\\r)\a, 
TO Te Biatcpivo/jieva Kal o-vjKpiv6/j,eva irpof TTJV avTwv Bia/jLei/36/jieva 
eBpav tcao~T* Ikvai Travra, TOVTOIS rot? Tradtjfjiaai Tryjo? d\\rj\a 
5 o-v/jL7r\%0icri Tedavfj>aTovpyr}fj,i'a TO! /card Tpowov 

XXXVIII. Kat Br/ Kal TO r??9 dvaTrvorjs, odev o Xo7o? wpfirjcre, D 
Kara, raOra /cat Bid TOVTWV yeyovev, wo'Trep ev rot9 
eiprjTat, TfjivovTO<; fjiev ra <riTia TOV Trvpos, alwpov/Jieva) Be C 
10 TO) TTvev/jLaTi ^vveTTO^evov, ra? ^)X,e/Sa? re e/c T^? Koi\ias 
vvai()prj(ri 7r\r)povvTO<? Ty ra TeTfjbrjfj,eva avroOe 
ical Bid TavTa Br; ica& o\ov TO aw^a irucri rot? ^wot9 TO. 

4 ?Kaor': ?^a<rTO S. 8 raOra: TaflrA AH. 

9 alupovfj^v(f> coniecit H. dlupov^tvov ASZ. 10 r^ireA. 

subtle substance, which is released by 
friction, the pores of the amber being 
expanded. This substance on escaping 
and coming into collision with the ad- 
jacent air sets up a irepiuxris : and the air 
impinging from behind drives before it 
any light object in the vicinity, until it 
reaches the electrified piece of amber. 
Theophrastos seems to confound amber 
with the loadstone : de lapidibtts 29 tirel 
5t Kal r6 rj\eKTpov \Ldos... yuaXtcrra 5' tirl- 
877X0$ Kal tpavepuTaTT) rj TOV aiSrjpov a- 

i. TV 'HpaK\tCwv \6wv] This 
name is said to have been given to the 
loadstone from the town of Herakleia 
in Lydia. Plato's theory of the magnet 
is very much the same as in the case of 
the amber. There stream off from the 
magnet large and heavy particles of air, 
which, in the irepiuwtj that they occa- 
sion, themselves strike upon the iron and 
drive it towards the magnet. The rea- 
son why iron alone is so influenced is, 
according to Plutarch, that iron, being 
more dense than wood but less so than 
gold and other metals, has its pores of 
exactly the right size to retain the parti- 
cles of air, which thus, instead of slip- 
ping off as they do in the case of other 
substances, propel the iron before them. 

A peculiarity in this theory is that the 
air which escapes from the magnet itself 
is returned to it by the ireptwcrw : this is 
necessitated by the fact that iron and 
nothing else is attracted, iron being ame- 
nable to that particular kind of air alone. 
It is possible however that Plutarch may 
not have exactly represented Plato's 
meaning. On the subject of the load- 
stone compare Ion 533 D u<rirep tv rrj 
\i6tf), fjv TZtipiirlSrjs Mery^i/rii' tavofjuxrev, 
ol S TToXXol 'Hpa.K\ftav. Kal yap etyYjj 77 
Xi#os oil nbvov avTovs TOI)J daicrvXiovs ayet 
TOI/S ffiSypovs, dXXA Kal 5vvafj.ii> tvrlf)-t\ai 
ToZs 6aKTV\lois, war' aC dvvacrdat ravrbv 
TOVTO Troitlv oirep 17 \i6os, dXXoys dyeiv 
SaKTvXlovs, W<TT' tvlore 6pfj.a6os paKpos TTOVV 
fftBijpuv 5aKTV\luv 1; aXX^Xwi* TJprrjTai.' 
iraffi 5^ Toirrots 4 ^Keivrjs rfjs \i6ov 17 Sv- 
va/ avJiprijTai. Compare also Lucretius 
vi 998 1064. 

6\Kr\ (tiv OVIK ?<TTIV] It is this denial 
of 6\KT) which Galen chiefly complains 
of in Plato's physics : de plac. vin 
708 dvaipft yap O\KTJV, y vpbs iro\\a TUJV 
<pv<TiK&v fpyuv b'l.inroKpa.T'ris XP'T 7 " "- ^w* 
TOVTO yvayKaffOrj TU/V evepyfiuv tvia.s OVK 
dvev TTJS O\KTJS yivofj^vas els irepiuaiv ava- 

3. TO T 8iaKpiv6(iva] i.e. under the 
pressure of the iri\i]<ns the various bodies 



amber and of the loadstone all these are due to no drawing 
power, but to two causes: first there is no void, and the 
atoms jostle one upon another ; secondly when they are divided 
or contracted they change places and move severally towards 
their own region ; and by the complication of such conditions 
all these wonders arise, as will be plain to him who examines 
them by the proper method. 

XXXVIII. The process of respiration then, whence this 
discussion arose, rests on the principles and causes which have 
been set forth : fire divides the food, following the air as it 
sways up and down within ; and through this oscillation it re- 
plenishes the veins from the belly by pumping into them from 
thence the comminuted food. In this way throughout the whole 
body of all animals the streams of nourishment are kept con- 

are constantly changing their form and 
their appropriate region in space. The 
text can hardly be sound here. 

5. TtOavnaTovpyrin^va] Owing to 
the endless complexity and intricacy of 
the interaction which these two forces 
exert upon one another, many of their 
effects appear to us marvellous, because 
we have not the means of tracing the 
conditions which gave rise to them. 
Compare Laws 893 D dio Srj TUIV 0av- 
fMcurruv a.wa.vT<iiv TT-qyT) ytyovev, d'/ua fj.f- 
yaXots Kal fffuicpois KVK\OIS j3padvTTJTas re 
Kal rdx?! 6fj.o\oyov(j.eva iropevovcra, d5t5- 
VO.TOV uis &v Tts tXirifffie yiyveffdai ir6.6os. 

80 D 8 1 E, c. xxxviii. Respiration 
then is subsidiary to digestion : the fire 
which accompanies the oscillation of the 
air comminutes the food, which is then 
pumped into the blood-vessels and dis- 
tributed throughout the body. The nu- 
triment, consisting as it does of different 
kinds of vegetables, has naturally a va- 
riety of hues ; but the action of the fire 
reduces it all to a predominant red colour. 
Now the microcosm of the human body 
has its motions conformable to those of 
the great universe : the law that like seeks 
to like holds good of it also. So as the 
substance of our bodies is continually 

being dissolved and evaporated by the 
action of the external elements, the food 
that is assimilated by virtue of this natural 
law proceeds to replenish the void left 
by that which is lost : and the body in- 
creases or diminishes according as the re- 
plenishment exceeds or falls short of the 
waste. In a young child the substance 
of the body, though soft, has its triangles 
true and sharp : therefore they readi- 
ly overpower and assimilate the blunter 
triangles of the nutriment ; but as time 
goes on, the triangles are blunted and 
cannot so well subdue the others ; whence 
is old age and decay. Finally when the 
triangles of the vital marrow can no more 
hold out, the bonds of the soul are loosed, 
and she flies away rejoicing: for though 
death which comes by wounds or sickness 
is painful, when it is the result of natural 
decay it is painless and brings pleasure 
rather than distress. 

7. '69 tv & Xoyos wp|it]<re] i. e. the 
exposition of the law of vepluais. Plato 
now passes from respiration to the pro- 
cesses of nutrition, growth, decay and 
death. It seems to me that /caret raCra 
is clearly to be preferred over /card rat/rd 
for the sake of symmetry. 

ii. frravrXtiv] See above, 79 A. 

304 EAATHNOS [80 E 

rpo(pfj<; vauara ovrtos eTrippvra yeyove. veor^ra Be /cal diro 
^vyyevMV ovra, rd (j,ev Kapirwv, rd Be ^Xoi??, a #eo? eir avro E 
rovd* rjpJtv e(pvrevcrev elvai rpo<prjv, iravroBaTrd fiev ^pw/j-ara io"%ei, 
Sid rrjv ^vfA/Jii^iv, r) 8' epvOpd jr\elo~rr) Trepl avro XP oa Btadel, 
5 TTJ<{ rov 7TU/305 TOfj,f)<; re Kal e^o/id/3^6)9 ev v<ypw 
<f>v(Ti<;' '69ev rov Kara rd atopa peovros rd xpwpa <T%V o'tav 
Sie\ i r)\vOafj,ei>. o /caXovftev al/j-a, vo^riv trapKcav teal 
rov <T60fj,aros, Wev vSpevopeva exacrra TrXrjpoi rr)V rov Kevovpevov 81 A 
ftdaiv, o Be rpoTro? r^5 TrX^peotrea)? aTro^cop^creftj? re yiyverat, 

10 KaBdirep ev rr/3 Travrl Travrbs rj <j)opd ryeyovev, f)v ro 

rruv (peperat, TT/OO? eavro. rd pev yap Srj TrepLecrrwra e'/cro? ^/ 
rrjicei re del Kal Biavefiei Trpos etcaa-rov elBos rd 6fji.6<f>v\ov drco- 
, rd Be evaipa av, fcepfiano-Oevra eVro? Trap' Kal 
uxnrep vrc ovpavov ^vvecrrwros eKaarov rov %yov, 

15 TTJV TOV TravTo? dvajKa^erai p.ifjielcr6ai, (popdv TTpds ro j;vyyeve<; B 
ovv (pepouevov eKao~rov rwv evro<s ftepiadevrfov rd KevwOev rare 
7T(i\iv dveir\r)pwaev. orav fiev By 7r\eov rov emppeovro? drcirj, 
<p0ivet Trdv, orav Be eXarrov, av^dverai,. vea p,ev ovv %vvracn<s 

I ytyove : yeyovfrai ASZ. 12 airoirt/jLirovTa.: aTroir^/JLirov ASZ. 

15 TOV ante iravrbs delet A. 

I. Mppvra -yfyovc] cf. 43 A tirlp- tion of the elements which surround us 

pvrov ffw/jia Kal airbppvTov. the substance of the body is perpetually 

ciiri Ivyyevwv] i.e. composed of the undergoing transmutation and depletion, 

same elements. On the subject of vege- This body is to the blood within it as it 

table diet see note on 77 A. were an enclosing ovpav6s; and as changes 

5. T!}S TOV irvpos T0(xfjs re KO\ - take place in its substance, the blood is 

O|i6pg<<>s] See the account of the ytvfats drawn to and fro according to the affinities 

of red in 68 B. The colour of the blood of its particles. Each change that takes 

is due to the commingling of fire and place in any part of the body affects the 

moisture: the fire, as it were, prints off affinity of the blood towards that part, 

(^o/j-opyvvrai) its own colour on the blood, and consequently its tendency to flow in 

effacing the other hues. that direction. Accordingly, as changes 

8. TT]V TOV KVOV|J.'VOV |3<uriv] i.e. are continually going on in all parts of 
the place left vacant by the particles the body, the blood is constantly being 
flying off in the natural process of waste. hurried to and fro throughout its whole 
ftdffiv = TO i<p V /3^ijKe, the spot in which extent. This action is further supple- 
it rests. mented by the principle of irepluxris. For 

g. 6 8i Tpoiros TT}S ir\i]pwo-os] Plato as fast as any vacancy is created by the 

conceives the human microcosm to work waste of the particles which are absorbed 

on just the same principles as the ofyavfa by the surrounding elements, the blood 

in which it has its being. The vibration must rush in to take its place : whence 

of the uirodoxy is the force which governs arises the necessity for a continual supply 

the circulation of the blood. By the ac- of aliment. Such seems to be Plato's 

8 1 B] TIMA1OS. 305 

stantly supplied. And the particles of food, being freshly severed 
and from kindred substances some from fruits and some from 
herbs, which God planted just to be our sustenance, have all 
manner of colours owing to their intermixture; but a red hue per- 
vades them most of all, through the natural contrivance whereby 
the fire divides the food and imprints its own hue upon it : 
whence the colour of the fluid that circulates through the body 
has the appearance we have described. This we call blood, 
which is the sustenance of the flesh and of all the body, and 
from which all parts draw moisture to fill up the places that are 
left void. And the mode of replenishment and evacuation is 
like the motion of all things in the universe, whereby all kindred 
substances seek each other. The elements that surround us 
without are constantly dissolving our substance and distributing 
it to its several kinds, returning each to its own kindred : and 
again the particles of blood, being minutely divided within us 
and enveloped in every creature by the body, as though by a 
heaven surrounding them, are forced to copy the universal 
motion. Therefore each of the divided particles within us is 
carried to its own kind and thus replenishes again what was left 
void. Now when the loss is greater than the replenishment, 
everything diminishes, but when less, it increases. The young 

general meaning: but the exact part lows the account of afljj<ns and ipOiais. 

played respectively by the two principles When the human frame is still young, 

of 'like seeks to like' and the Trepiuxm the particles of which it is composed, 

is not very clearly indicated. and especially those of the vital fire, have 

n. TCI (xfcv Yap 8rj irtpitorwra] The all their angles true and keen. The par- 
surrounding elements are conceived to tides whereof the nutriment is formed 
have a solvent effect upon the body: they are, on the contrary, comparatively blunt 
convert icosahedrons into octahedrons, through age ; hence the fiery particles 
and so forth. Consequently these par- have no difficulty in dividing them and 
tides, on changing their forms, change performing the work described at 79 A. 
their natural homes, and flying off JT^OJ Consequently the food is very thoroughly 
TO 6fj.6<pv\oi>, leave a deficiency in the assimilated and dispersed throughout the 
substance of the body. body, and the child grows apace. Not- 

15. irpos TO gvyycvls] i.e. the particles withstanding the minute elaboration of 

of the blood which are akin to those of this and several previous chapters, we 

any special portion of the body flow read in Aristotle de gen, et corr. I ii 31 5" 

thither so soon as room is made for them 29 IlXdrwi/ fjv oZv id>vov repl yertffews 

by the efflux of any particles from that ((TK^CLTO (cat <p0opa.s, STTWJ virapxti rois 

spot. irpdy/j.y.<n, Kal irepi ytvfafw ov wd<n;s, 

1 8. via \v oiiv v<rTa<ris] Now fol- dXXd TT)S TWV vroixduv iru> ol aapKts 

P. T. 20 

306 TIAATHNOS [81 B 

rov rravros %a>ov, tcaivd TO. rpiywva olov CK B^vo^wv en e^ov^a 
rwv yevtav, la")(vpdv fj,ev rrjv ^iyK\ei<riv avroSv Trpo? XX?;Xa 
KeKrrjrai, ^vfjLTreTrijye Be 6 Tra? oyKos avr"><> aTraXo?, fir" etc ^ivekov c 
fiev veaxrrl yeyovvias, reOpa^evri^ Be ev ydXaKrt. rd Brj TrepcXa/t- 

5 j3av6fJLva ev avrfj rpiycova e^wBev eTreio-ekdovra, e <av av 77 ra re 
<riria ical TTord, rwv eavrfjs rpiywvav ira\ai6repa ovra KOI dade- 
vearepa icaivols tTTttcparei refivova-a, /cal fj.eja aTrepyti^erat TO 
rpe<f)ov(ra ex TroXXcDi/ opoiwv. orav 8' r/ pi^a roov rpvyatvcov 
a Bid TO TroXXoi)? dyoovas ev TroXXcS ^poz/w TT/OO? TroXXa 

10 ^wvicrdat,, TO /juev rfjs Tpcxfrfjs ela-iovra ov/cert Bvvarai repveiv D 
et? 6/jLoioTrjTa eauTot?, avrd Be VTTO TWV ^o)0v eireia-iovrwv evTreTW 
Biaipelrai- (frOivei Brj irav fraov ev TOVTW tcparovaevov, yrjpds re 
ovo/jid^eTai TO irddos. TeXo? Be, eireiBdv rwv irepl rbv five^-ov 
rpiywvwv 01 %vvap[Ji,o(T0evr<? fjurjiceri dfr^cocri Becrfj.oi TOJ irovat 

15 BiMrrdfjLevoi, fiedida-t TOI)<? rfj<i ^^%^9 av Becrfj.ovs, r) Be \v6el<ra 
Kara <f>v(riv yu.e#' rjBovr)*; e^eTrraro. irdv yap TO ^ev irapd $vaiv i-; 
d\<yivov, TO B* r) tre^VKe yiyvofjievov rj&v' Kal Odvaros By Kara 
ravrd 6 /j,ev Kara voVoL"? ical VTTO rpav^drwv yiyi>6fj,evo$ d\yeivb<; 
Kal /3/ato?, o Be fj,erd yr)po)S loov erri TeXo? Kara (frvcriv dirovwraros 

-20 rwv Oavdrwv Kal /j.(i\\ov peff* r)8ovrj<$ yiyvo/jievos r) 

5 fr avr% : eaiir^s A. 8t post fireiffeXOovTa inserit A. 


15 : difffrafjitvo'. A. difffra^ioi HSZ. 19 yfipus : yfyas SZ. 

^ offra T\ T&V &\\wv TI TU>V TotovTuv, ouStv. I conceive pifa to mean the fundamental 

tn otire irepl dXXoiwcrewj otire wepl av^rj- structure of the triangles : the outlines 

ffews, riva rpbirov vira.px<>v<n rots irpayfia- composing it, its sides and angles, from 

ffi.v. long wear and tear, are no longer so true 

i. olov fcc 8pv6xv] i.e. new-made, in form as once they were. 

like a ship from the stocks, and tightly 10. rdl jxiv rrjs Tpo<J>TJs] Compare 

fitting. TWI yevuv is construed with rpl- Hippokrates tie prisca medicina vol. I 

yuva. p- 27 Kiihn ocra fjitv Iff-xypbrfpa rj 01) Sv- 

3. 6 iras S-yKOs] As a whole the vrifferai Kparteiv T\ 0wrts, f/v fff^d\Tirai, 

infantine body is soft, but this of course OTTO rourtwv 5' avruv irovovs re Kal vo<rovs 

does not mean that the particles whereof Kal foeffdac offw 5' &v dvvrjrai 

it is composed, taken individually, are ^iriKpar^eiv, awo rovrtuv rpo<f>riv re KOU 

soft. aO^rjffiv Kal vyidrjv. 

8. t] pi^a. TWV Tpi-ywvwv] This phrase n. avrd. 8i iiri TWV ?|<o0v] Instead 

is somewhat obscure. Stallbaum supposes of dividing and assimilating the particles 

it to mean simply the radical triangles. of the food, the particles of the body are 

But as no other triangles can possibly themselves divided ; and the constitution 

be in question, this is utterly pointless. being thus generally enfeebled, the con- 

Martin renders it 'la pointe'; but this dition ensues which we call old age. 

seems to restrict the meaning too much. Plato has not expressly distinguished be- 

K] TIMAIO2. 307 

frame then of the entire creature, having the triangles of its ele- 
ments still as if fresh from the workshop, has them firmly linked 
one to another ; but the whole mass is soft in substance, seeing 
that it has been newly formed out of marrow and nurtured upon 
milk. Now forasmuch as the triangles of the substances com- 
posing the food and drink, which enter from without and are 
received within the young creature, are older and feebler than 
those of the latter, it divides and subdues them with its new 
triangles, and by the assimilation of a large number nourishes 
and increases the animal : but when the exact outline of the 
triangles is blunted, because they have been for a long time 
struggling with many others, they are not able as of old to 
comminute and assimilate the entering aliment, but are them- 
selves easily divided by the incoming particles. At such a time 
every living thing is enfeebled and wastes away; and this con- 
dition is termed old age. Finally when the bonds of the tri- 
angles belonging to the ma/row no longer hold to their fasten- 
ings but snap asunder with the stress, they loose in their turn 
the bonds of the soul ; and she, being in the course of nature 
released, flies away with gladness. For all that is contrary to 
nature is painful ; but whatsoever takes place in the natural way 
is pleasant. On the same principle death which ensues upon 
sickness or wounds is painful and violent ; but that which draws 
to the natural end in the course of old age is of all deaths the 
least distressing and is accompanied rather by pleasure than by 

tween the fiery particles, which do the 15. 8iwrT(iji,voi] The form Sieva- 

work of digestion, and those which enter M^ot, adopted by the more recent editors 

into the composition of the body at large. from A, seems to me very suspicious. 

We must suppose that when the pyramids The only parallel quoted, so far as I can 

of the vital fire become too much blunted find, is /careoreareu in Herodotus I 196, 

to perform their duty properly, the incom- where there is a variant KaTtaraffi, which 

ing aliment makes war upon and weakens Abicht reads. Altogether the word ap- 

the general structure of the body. pears to need more support than it has 

14. |it]K^Ti dvT^\w<ri Sco-pot] Finally, yet received. 

when the triangles of the marrow itself 16. Kara <j>\i<riv] The doctrine that 
become blunted, the bonds of the soul death in the course of nature is pain- 
are loosed, and she flies forth with joy : less, if not pleasurable, is conformable 
or translating into plain prose, the brain to Plato's general theory of pleasure and 
and spinal marrow become no longer a pain. Pain is the result of a condition 
fit medium for the soul to act upon. For which is irapa. <t>u<riv: therefore death, 
see 73 D. which is (card (friffiv, cannot be painful. 

2O 2 



[8 1 E 

XXXIX. To Be rtav vocrav Wev ^vvicrrarai, Bij\6v irov Kal 
TravrL rerrdpwv yap ovrwv yeva>v, e &v crv/j,7re7rrjye TO crwua. 82 A 
yfj<? 7rupo<? {/Sard? re KOI depos, rovra)v 77 Trapd <f>vcnv ir\eove^ia 
Kal evBeia Kal TV? ^&>'pa? nerdcrracns e' oiWa<? eV o\\orpiav 

5 yiyvo/Aevr), Trvpos re av Kal ru>v erepcav etreiBrj yevrj 7r\eiova eves 
ovra rvy%dvi, TO fir) Trpocrijicov exao-rov eavrw 7rpocr\afji(3aveiv 
ical irdvO 1 ocra roiavra crrdcreis Kal vocrovs Trape^ei' irapa (frvcriv 
yap eKacrrov yiyvofjievov Kal /jLeOiGTa/j-evov Oepfiaiverai fiev ocra 
av Trporepov ^v^Tai, f-ypd Be ovra et? i<rrepov yiyverai vorepa, B 

10 Kal Kov<f>a Br) Kal fiapea, Kal Trdcras trdvrrj /u,eTa/3oXa<? Several. 
ftoi/ax? yap Bt'j, <f>afj,ev, rairov ravra, Kara ravro Kal wcravrcos 
Kal dvd \6yov irpocryiyvofjLevov Kal aTroyiyvo/jievov e/icrei ravrov 
ov avry aatv Kal vyies f^eveLV o 8' dv 7r\i]iLp,e\r)crr) n rovrwv 
eT09 dirtov 77 Trpocribv, dX\oi6rr)ra$ Tra/nTrot/ciXa? Kal vocrovs 

15 <f>0opds re aTretpou? Trape^erai. Bevreptov By ^vcrrdaewv av Kara 

8 Sffa oc : S^airep &i> S. U fiovbrs : /JLOVOV S. ravrov : ravro S. 

5rj : devrtpuv d S. 

8 1 E 84 c, f. xxxix. A classification 
of diseases now follows. These arise (i) 
from excess or deficiency of any of the 
primary substances of which the body is 
formed, viz. fire air water and earth; this 
causes disturbance of the natural condi- 
tions and consequently pain and sickness : 
(2) from disorder in the secondary struc- 
tures of the body and reversal of their 
natural relations. For naturally the 
blood feeds the flesh, and the flesh se- 
cretes a fluid which nourishes the bones 
and marrow: but in disease the flesh 
degenerates and dissolves into the blood, 
forming bUe of divers kinds and phlegm. 
But if the evil affects the flesh alone, the 
danger is not so great ; more serious is it 
when the cement which unites the flesh 
to the bones is attacked ; for then the 
very roots of the flesh are severed, and 
it is loosed from the bones and tendons. 
Yet graver is the case when the mischief 
seizes upon the bones themselves; but 
most deadly of all, if the malady is in the 
marrow; for then the whole course of the 
body's nature is reversed from the very 

2. TTT(ipv] Plato distinguishes be- 
tween the primary and the secondary 
structures of the body. The first are 
simply the fire air earth and water where- 
of it is composed : the second are struc- 
tures formed out of these; blood, flesh, 
tendons, bone, and marrow. The mala- 
dies arising from disorders of the first 
class are not here specified ; but in 86 A 
we have continued and intermittent fevers 
referred hereto ; and probably most minor 
ailments would be assigned to this cause. 
These Trpdrai ^vcrrafffis are termed in the 
Timaeits Locrns 102 C ral dTrXat Suvd/uies. 
flep/uiras 77 \f/vxporas rj vyporas rj typdras. 

5. irwpos T au Kal TWV tr^ptov] Stall - 
baum, joining these words with the 
preceding, gives a very unsatisfactory 
account of this passage. There is no 
difficulty in it, if we expunge the comma 
which he places after ertpwv and take the 
genitives after ytvr). Plato is giving two 
causes of sickness ; the first is the excess 
or defect or unnatural situation of some 
element ; the second (introduced by aC) 
is that, whereas diverse kinds exist of 
each element (cf. 57 c), the wrong sort is 

82 B] 



XXXIX. Now the cause whence sicknesses arise is doubt- 
less evident to all. For seeing there are four elements of which 
the body is composed, earth fire water and air, any unnatural 
excess or defect of these or change of position from their own 
to an alien region, and also since there are more than one 
kind of fire and the other elements the reception by each of 
an unfitting kind, and other such causes, all combine to pro- 
duce discord and disease. For when any of them changes 
its nature and position, the parts that formerly were cool are 
heated, and those that were dry become afterwards moist, and 
the light become heavy, and all undergo every kind of change. 
The only way we allow in which one and the same substance 
can remain whole and unchanged and sound is that the same 
element should be added to it or taken away from it on the 
same principle and in the same manner and proportion; and 
whatsoever errs in any of these points in its outgoings or in- 
comings causes a vast diversity of vicissitudes and diseases and 
destructions. Next in the secondary structures which are in a 

present. The subject of raptxet. is the 
sentence rb fj.^ irpooT)Koi>...ToiauTa. 

7. ortums Kai v<5orovs] Compare 
Sophist 228 A vbaov t<rus Kal GT&(H.V ov 
TO.VTOV vevb/juKas. 

8. 0ep[iaivTcu, \i*v] Compare Hip- 
pokrates de natura honiinis vol. I p. 350 
Kuhn jroXXci yap elffiv tv T$ ffw/jLari e6vra, 
a OKt>Tai> vir' dXXijXwj' irapa (ftiiffiv 6ep/j,ai- 
vyTai re Kal ij/i/XTjTat., Kal ^paLvijTai re Kal 
vypaivrjTai, vovffovs riKrei, This refers, 
as appears a little further on, to the four 
vital fluids enumerated by Hippokrates 
p. 352 rb dt ffw/j.a TOV 

avT$ al/j.a Kal 0X^y/ua Kal 
fryovv ^avOrjv re Kai /j.t\aii>a.v , Kal ravr' 
tffriv atirtif) T] (fttiais TOV ffw/iaroj, Kal dia 
ravra a\ytfi Kal vyialvti. vyialvet ptv 
o$v fidXiffra, oK6rav /uerpfws fxv TaDra 
T^J irpis aXXT/Xa (tp^crioj Kal SwdjAios Kal 
TOV 7rXr?0eos, Kal /xaXt^ra rjv fj.(/ju.y/j.tva $ ' 
d\y{ti 8^, oK^Tav TI Tovrttav l-\affffov -fj 
w\tov 17, 17 x w P t<r ^5 & Tip ffw/tan Kal /ai) 
KfKpijfJiivov jj Totcri u/j.ira<ri. This state- 
ment of Hippokrates is approved by Ga- 

len as more correct than Plato's, de plac. 
Hipp, et Plat, viu 677, 678. Compare 
a statement attributed to Alkmaion by 
Stobaeus florilegium 100 \tyei 8 TCLS 
vbcrovs ffVfj.irlTrTii>, ws [t-tv vip 1 oC, 5t' inrep- 
fio\Tr)v Oep(j.6Tr)Tos rj ^TIP&TTJTOS, us 81 41; oC, 
dia w\TJdos Tpcxprjs !) tvSeias, ws 8t tv ols, 
al/j.a 77 fiveXov ij tyKt<j>a\ot>: and again 101 
' A\Kfjt,alwv ftf>T] TTJS> vyifias ilvai crvveK- 
TiKi]f Tyv laovofjdav TWV Svydfiediv vypov 
l-ypov \fsvxpov Oepfiov iriKpov y\vntos Kal TU>V 
\our(ai> ' T^\V d' v avToly novap\lav vboois 
vapaffKfvaffTiKriv ilvai. 

ii. P.OVWS v^P Sij] i-e. each several 
part must have a continuous and un- 
changing supply in due proportion of the 
elements which contribute to its sub- 

15. Sturepcov Si] u<rTa<j-wv] The 
8t>srepa.i l-vffTdofis are the various 6fwio- 
fiepri, in Aristotelian terminology, of 
which the body is constructed; blood, 
flesh, bones &c. Galen de plac. vm 680 
is wrong in blaming Plato for making 
blood a Sevrtpa v<rTa7i$, since 



[82 B 

i~vi>e<rrr)Kvi(i)v Beurepa Karavorjtris vocrrifjudraiv r<x> 
ylyverai ^vvvorja-ai. /iueXoz) yap e!~ eKeivcov ccrrov re KOI <rapKo<; 
xal vevpov v/j,7rayevro<;, eri re ai/zaro? d\\ov fjt,ev rpoirov, eic Be 
rcov avrwv <yejovoro<f, roov fj,ev aA,Xa>i> TO. TrXetcrra f/7rep rd Trpocrdev, 

5 ra Be fjLeyio-ra rwv voarj^nrcov rfjBe %d\7ra ^vfnreTrra)Kev, 'orav 
dvdira\iv 77 yeve(ri<; rovrtov Tropevtjrat, rore ravra Bia(f)6elperai. 
Kara (frvcriv jap (rdpKes fiev KOL vevpa e a'tparos ryiyveTctt, vevpov 
fiev e Ivwv Bta rr/v ^vyyereiav, crap/ce^ Se dwo rov 
o TrrpyvvTcu %(i)pi6fj,evov Iv&v TO Se CLTTO raiv vevpcov KCLI 

10 cnriov av <y\icrxpov /cal \nrapov afj,a ftev rrjv crdpica K0\\a 

rrjv rcuv OCTTGOV <f>vcriv avro re TO Trepl rov pveXov ocrrovv rpe<f>ov 
av^ei, TO 8' av Bid rrjv 7rvicvbrr}ra rwv o(rr<av oiijBov/jievov KaOapoo- 
rarov <yevos rdov rpiywvwv \eiorarov re teal Xnrapoararor. 
\ei/36fjievov a7ro ru>v ocrrdav Kal crrd^ov, dpSei rov fiv\6v Kai 

'5 /card ravra fiev yiyvofjievcov eicd&rwv vjieia jfvfjiftaivei rd TroXXa- 
vocroi Be, 'orav evavrlws. orav <ydp rrjKOfjievr) o~dp% dvaTraXiv et? 
T? 0XeySa? rr)v rrjKeBova eif), rore perd Trvevparos al/j,a TTO\V 


T Kal TravroBaTTov ev rait <j>\e^ 

3 t-n 

i;voTaffeis differed from those of Hip- 
pokrates and Galen. His distinction is 
that each of the irpwrai fwreureis consists 
of one element only, a single geometrical 
form ; whereas a Sevrtpa i5<rraerts is com- 
posite, being formed of two or more TT/JW- 

TCti W77"GUTfty. 

2. 8- CKcCvwv] sc. fK TV Terrdpuv. 

3. aXXov jxiv rpoirov] That is to say, 
the blood is prepared by a process 
peculiar to itself, being formed directly 
from the aliment by the action of the in- 
ternal fire, as described at 79 A: cf. 73 B 
74 D. 

4. rot irXtiora fiircp TO, irpo<r6cv] i.e. 
the majority of ailments are due to defects 
of the irpuTat |i<rrtureis, but the most 
serious to those of the Bevrepai. 

6. dvairaXiv tj y^v<ris] In disease 
the order of nature's process is reversed : 
the natural ytveais is from blood, which 
is the. sustenance of the whole body, suc- 
cessively to flesh, tendons, and the oily 
fluid which nourishes the bcnes and 
marrow. But sickness causes flesh to 

Kai iTiKporrjo'i 
i*i A. 

degenerate and liquefy and pass into the 
blood, contrary to the order of nature; 
and in severe cases this degeneration 
begins higher up, with the bones or even 
the vital marrow itself. 

8. ft, Ivwv] That is, from the fibrine 
of the blood, which both Plato and 
Aristotle distinguished from the serum, 
l\_u>p, though the globules were unknown 
to them. In 84 A Iv&v appears to mean 
the fibrine of the flesh, not of the blood. 
Compare Aristotle historia animalium III 
vi 5i5 b 27 al Si Ivts eiffi /XTO|I) vetipov 
Kal (\e,36s. eviai 5' avruv J-x ovfflv vypb- 
TIJTO. rrjv rov ix&pos, Kal 5i^x ovffiv <*' r ^ Te 
TUV vfvpuv irpbs TO.* <p\4fias Kal air' (Kel- 
vuv irpbs ra. vevpa. HO~TI 8i Kal o\\o ytvos 
Ivuiv, o yiveTai ntv iv ai/j-ari, OVK iv airaf- 

01) irriyvvrai. r6 at/ua, iav di /J,r) 
riyvvrai: cf. Ill xvi 5iy b 32, 
de partibtts animalium n ix 654 b 28, and 
II iv 651* I ai 5' Ivfs ffTeptov Kal yewdts, 
uiffre ylvovTai olov irvpiai iv r< a'ijj.aTi Kal 
ffffiv iroiovaiv iv rots 6v/j.ols : he compares 

E] TIMAI02. 311 

natural state of union a second class of diseases may be dis- 
cerned by one who would scrutinise them. For whereas marrow 
and bone and flesh and sinew are composed of the four elements, 
and blood is formed of the same though in a different way, most 
of the diseases arise in the manner before explained, but the 
gravest afflict them with especial severity in the following way : 
that is to say, when the order of their generation is reversed, 
these structures are then destroyed. For in the course of nature 
flesh and sinews arise from blood, the sinews from the fibrine, 
owing to their affinity; the flesh from the clots which are formed 
when the fibrine is separated. From the sinews and flesh again 
proceeds a glutinous and oily fluid, which not only cements the 
flesh to the structure of the bones and itself gives nourishment 
and growth to the bone which encloses the marrow, but also so 
much of it as filters through the dense substance of the bones, 
being formed of the purest and smoothest and most slippery 
kind of the triangles, as it distils and oozes from the bones, 
irrigates the marrow. When these structures are produced in 
this order, health is the result as a rule ; but when this is re- 
versed, sickness ensues. For when the flesh decomposes and 
returns the deliquescent matter to the veins, then is mingled 
with air in the veins much blood of manifold kinds, with 
diverse hues and bitter qualities, as well as acid and saline 

them to the earthy element in mud. another part, the finest and smoothest, 

9. o irrj-yvvTai X W P 1 5I 1 ^ VWV Ivwv] filters through to the marrow. 

This is a curious statement: he con- 17. |ird irvcvjxaTos ai|xa] This indi- 

ceives the flesh to be formed by the con- cates that Plato regarded the veins as ducts 

cretion of what is left of this blood after for air as well as blood. Aristotle also held 

the Ives have gone to form vevpa. that air passed through the blood-vessels : 

10. yX<rxpov ical Xiirapov] This glu- see historia animalittm I xvii 496" 30 
tinous and oily secretion of the flesh and t'n-d^w 5' elalv ol diro TT;S xapdias vfyoi 
tendons is perhaps identical with the of/dels 8' tcrrl KOIVOS TTO'/JOS, a\X& Stct ryv 
synovial fluid, which lubricates the joints. fftiva^iv dx ovTai T ^ Tvev/jia *al rrj Kap5ia 
Plato supposes it to form by coagulation 8iairt/j,irovffu>. The word irbpos is else- 
the periosteum, or membrane enclosing where applied by Aristotle to a nerve ; 
the bones, and therefore to cement to- but here he is clearly speaking of a blood- 
gether flesh and bones : it also penetrates vessel. It was supposed by some autho- 
the bony envelope of the spinal column rities after his time that the arteries, as 
and nourishes the vital marrow, as well distinguished from the veins, were filled 
as the bones which protect it. with air alone: see Cicero de natnra 

12. TO 8' a3 answers a/*a fdi> : while deorum 138 eoque modo ex his par- 
part of the oily fluid is employed as above, tibus et sanguis per venas in omne cor- 

3 i2 DAATHNOS [82 E 

\6fierov, en Be 6f;iai<t KOI n\avpai<f 
real <j>\eyfjLara Travroia t'o-^et. TrdXivaipera yap rrdvra yeyovora 
Kal Bie<p6ap/JLeva TO re alaa avro irputrov 8/oXXucn, Kal aura 
ovBeaiav rpo<j)r)V en T&5 (rwp,ari Trape^ovra <f>eperai rrdvrrj Bid 83 A 

5 TO>I> (frXeftcav, rdiv rwv Kara <f>i'<riv ov/cer' tcr^ovra irepioBwv, 
e"x@pd fjiev avrd avrols Bin ro f^ujBe/Miav dTroXav&iv eavrwv e^etz>, 
ru> ^vvearfart. Se roO crw/iaro? Kal ftevovri Kara %a>pav 7ro\p,ta, 
8io\\vvra Kal rrjKOvra. 'ouov uev ovv av 7ra\aiorarov ov T^? 
<rapKo<s raKr), BiHnreTrrov yt,yv6p.evov /AeXalvei JJLCV viro TraXatc"? 

10 ^uyau<7ea)9, Bid 8e ro Trdvry Sta/Be/Spato-Oat rriKpov ov iravrl 
%a\Trov TrpocnriTrrei rov (rwyLtaro?, ocrov av /J,rj7ra) 8ie<j)dapfJ,evov ff B 
Kal rare /J,ev dvrl rfc TriKporrjros o^vrrjra ecr^e TO pe\av %pwp.a, 
dTro\TrrvvQevTO<i pa\\ov rov iriKpov- rare Se rj -jriKporr}^ av 
/Sa^>6i<ra atyaart ^p&5//,a (r%v epvBpcorepov, rov Be /ieXaz/o? rovra) 

15 vyKepavvvfj,i>ov ^XoeoSe?' eri Be ^vuuiyvvrat %av6ov ^/ow/Lta 
fjuera r^9 rriKporrfro^, orav vea %vvraKrj crdpj; viro rov irepl rrjv 
<f>\6ya Trvpos. Kal ro fjt,ev KOLVOV ovofia Tracri rovrois r} rives 
larpouv TTOV %o\rjv en~wv6p.a<rav rj Kai rt? a>v Bvvaros els TroXXa C 
fjbkv Kal dvouoia /3\e7reiv, opdv Be ev avrols ev yevO'i evov dEiov 

20 hnnrvfjUay rracri' rd 8' a'XXa ocra %oX^9 eiBt) \eyerai, Kara rrjv 

cr^e \6yov avrdjv eKaarov 

Trpdos, 6 Be ae\alvr)<; %oX^? o^et'a? re 07/3409, orav 
/Aiyvvrjrai Bid dep^ortjra dXavpa Bwdfiei' Ka\eirai Be o^v <f)\ey/J,a 

5 oiiKfr' Iffxovra. ; ouWri ffxovra A. OUK^T' ?x ovTa S. 14 tpvOp&repov : tpv6po- 

repov S. 15 x^owSes dedi ex Cornari correctione et nonnullis codicibus. xoKtaSes 


pus diffunditur et spiritus per arterias. ytveffiv %x o> ' ra - 

Cicero uses the word 'arteria' in the 5. Taiv TWV Kard <j>xiriv] Although 

modern sense. Plato was of course ignorant concerning 

1. \o\ds Kal lx"Jpas Kal <|>XcYI^(i>Ta] the circulation of the blood, he conceived 
The decomposition of the flesh produces it to have regular periodic motions. 

bile and serum and phlegm. By x^&s 6. |.r]8p,av tavrwv airoXatxrivl i.e. 

we must understand morbid conditions or they do not contribute to each other's 

excessive abundance of that fluid : since nourishment 

in 71 B, C Plato expressly recognises that g. 8vnreirTOv] Being old firm flesh, 

XoXrj is a normal and necessary con- it yields reluctantly to the decomposing 

stituent of the body ; which is more than agent. 

Aristotle did : cf. de partibtts animaliitm pcXaCvci |Uv] i e. it is blackened 

IV ii 676 b 31, 677* ii 22. The same by long-standing inflammation and cor- 

applies to Ixupa.*, viz. that an abnormal rosion. The degeneration of flesh pro- 

condition is to be understood. duces a morbid kind of x ^ 1 ? 5 of which 

2. iro\ivapTa] i.e. avdiraXiv TT\V are enumerated four classes, (i) black, 

83 c] TIMAIO2. 313 

properties ; and this contains all kinds of bile and serum and 
phlegm. For as all these are going the wrong way and have 
become corrupt, first they ruin the blood itself, and furnishing 
no nutriment to the body rush in all directions through the 
veins, paying no heed to the periods appointed by nature, but 
at war one with another, because they have no gcod of each 
other ; at war also with all that is established and fixed in the 
body, which they corrupt and dissolve. Now when the oldest 
part of the flesh is decomposed, being hard to soften, it turns 
black through long-continued burning, and through being every- 
where corroded it is bitter and dangerous to whatever part of 
the body it attacks which is not yet corrupted. Sometimes this 
black sort is acid instead of bitter, when the bitterness is more 
refined away ; and again the bitter sort being steeped in blood 
gains a redder hue; and when black is mingled with this, it is 
greenish : sometimes too a yellow colour is added to the bitter- 
ness, when new flesh is decomposed by the fire of the inflam- 
mation. To all these symptoms the general name of bile has 
been given, either by physicians, or by some one who in looking 
at many dissimilar appearances was able to see one universal 
quality pervading them all which deserved a name. All other 
kinds of bile which are reckoned have their several descriptions 
according to their colour. Of lymph, one kind is the mild 
serum of blood, the other is an acrid secretion of black and 
acid bile, when that is blended through inflammation with a 
saline property : this kind is called acid phlegm. But that 

either bitter or acid, produced by the 16. TOV irtpl rqv <J>\OYI irvpos] If 

degeneration of old flesh, (2) reddish, <f>\bya is right it must signify 'the in- 

where there is an admixture of blood, (3) flammation'; but it is curiously abrupt, 

green, apparently a combination of the and I am disposed to agree with Lindau 

two former, (4) yellow, from the corro- in suspecting it to be corrupt, though I 

sion of newly-formed flesh. cannot approve of his suggested altera- 

15. xXowSes] This reading is clearly tion. 

right: when Plato is classifying xo^ c * 1 7- Ka ^ r & H^" *oiv6v ovopx] All 
according to colour, it were absurd to these different forms have received the 
call one class xo^Ses. It wi H be re- general name of xM. bestowed either 
membered too that at 68 C green is de- by medical men (and presumably some- 
rived from a mixture of red and black. what at hap hazard), or more scienti- 
xXowSey is found in one ms. and the margin fically by a philosopher skilled in dis- 
of another, and is also confirmed by cerning t M XXots. Compare 68 D. 
Galen. 23. KoXirai 8i <Sv <$>\iy\i.a.' Of 

314 nAATONOS [83 c 

TO TOIOVTOV. TO av //,fr ae/3o? TrjKOftevov CK vea<? Ka 

TOU'TOU 8e dvepwOevTos Kal gvjj,7repi\7)<f)devTos inrb vypo- D 
Kal Tro^oXv^wv ^ua-racrcav K TOV Trddovs TOVTOV KaO' 
eKacrrrjv uev aoparwv Bid cr/jLiKpoTrjra, ^vvcnracroSv Be TOV oyKov 

5 Trape^oaevatv oparov, ^pcw/ua e^ovaaJv Bid TTJV TOV d<j>pov yeveaiv 
iBelv \VKOV, TavTtjv Tracrav Tijice&ova a?ra\^9 crapKO? y^iera Trvev- 
/j,aTos v/ji7r\,aKei(Tav Xevtcbv elvai, <f)\eyfji,a <f>a[j,ev. (f)\ey/JiaTO<f 8e 
av veov ^vviaTafievov opo? t'Sptw? /cal Sdicpvov, c<ra re aXXa rotaura E 
crc3y[/,a TO icaO* qfj,pav %tTai, tcadaipofj^evov Kal TavTa p,ev By 

10 travTa vocrwv opyava yeyovev, OTav al/J-a /i; K TWV (TITLWV Kal 
TTOTWV 7r\r)0v<Tr) Kara <J>v<riv, d\\' e evavrlwv TOV oyKov trapa 
TOI)? T^? <f>vaea><> \a^dvr) vopovs. oiatcpivo/jbevr)? fjiev ovv inrb 
v6<ra>v Trjs crapKos Kaa-Trj<f, pevovTwv 8e TWV Trvd fjie 
tffjilcreia Ttjs v/jL<f)Opa<i rj SuvajAis' dvd\rj-\lnv yap CTI 

15 t'o"^et* TO 8e Sr) crdpKas ocrroi? %vv$ovv OTTOT' av vocnjcrr), Kal fjUjKert, 84 A 

Ivwv apa Kal vevpwv dTro^wpi^o^euov OCTTO) [Lev Tpofyrj, 
L Se Trpo? o<7ToOf ylyvyTai Bea/jio^, aXX' CK \nrapov Kal \eiov 
Kal y\ia"xpov Tpa%v Kal d\p,vpbv av^fj,rjaav IITTO 
yevrjTai, TOTS TavTa Tracr^oy irdv TO TOIOVTOV 
auTO 7rd\iv inrb T? trdpKas Kal ra vevpa, d(j>i<TTd/j,evov d-rrb 
CKTTWV, at 8' eK TWV pL^wv gvveKTriTTTova-ai T<Z re vevpa yvfivd u 

7 v/\a.Kei<rav :\ei<e'iffai> A. 16 ai/ro scripsi: aCroAHSZ. 

a^.a, quod suadente Lindavio recepi, probavit nee tamen admisit S. af/ia AHSZ. 

<f>\ty/j.a two sorts are distinguished, <5u ya.ff6flffrjs a.TroreXovfjL^vr]. 
and Xeu/co^. The first is the serum of 2. u f x '' r P l ^- r l < } > 0*' VTOS viro 

/u^Xati/a xoXi^, and a morbid humour: the This seems to be a loose way of ex- 

second, formed by the dissolution of new- pressing that the air-bubbles are enclosed 

formed flesh and highly aerated, is in its in the moisture of the <j>\ty/j,a. 
normal state a natural and healthy se- g. TO Ko.0' ^plpav] i.e. in the normal 

cretion, viz. perspiration or tears ; but if healthy course of life. 
produced to excess, it is a source of dis- u. aXX' g vavrwv] i.e. when it 

ease. feeds upon the flesh or other structures of 

i . ^K Was Kal diraXTJs <rapKos] Ga- the body, instead of the food : see above, 

len, while approving Plato's description 82 E. 

of -0X^7/ua, dissents from his account of 13. (uvovrwv 8^ T<OV iruOjx^vwv] That 

its origin : see ofe plac. vm 699 rb 5^ IK is, if the mischief is comparatively super- 

s avaX-fjs (TO/DKOS yevtffOai work ficial, and the fundamental structure of 

TWV aroTrwrdrwv iffrl : his own the flesh is unhurt, recovery is still easy. 
statement is StdeiKrai yap ij ye TOV <f>\ey- 15. TO 8i 8ij tropicas OO-TOIS |\v8ovv] 

yoiaros ytvcffis tic Tpcxpys tfivfffi \f/vxpOT^pas sc. the y\l<rxpov Kal \nrapoi>, which by 

ivScus inrb rrjs tfj.<pvrov GepfMffias /corep- coagulation forms the periosteum, as ex- 

84 B] TIMAIO2. 315 

which is formed in conjunction with air by the liquefaction 
of new and tender flesh, when it is inflated with air en- 
veloped by moisture, and through this condition bubbles are 
formed, invisible separately because of their smallness, but all 
together becoming visible in the mass and presenting a white 
colour to view by the formation of froth this liquefaction of 
tender flesh in combination with air we term white phlegm. 
And the serum of freshly formed phlegm is sweat and tears, 
and whatever other secretions purify the body from day to day. 
All these become a means of disease, when the blood is not 
replenished from the food and drink in the natural way, but 
receives its volume in the contrary manner in despite of nature's 
laws. Now when the flesh is anywhere pierced by disease, but 
the foundations of it remain intact, the malady has only half its 
power; for there is still the prospect of ready recovery. But 
when that which unites the flesh to the bones is diseased, and 
in turn no longer by distilling both from the fibres and sinews 
nourishes the bones and cements the flesh to them, but 
instead of being oily and smooth and glutinous becomes harsh 
and saline and shrivelled through an unhealthy habit of life, 
under these conditions all that substance crumbles away under 
the flesh and the sinews and separates from the bones; while 
the flesh, falling away from its foundations, leaves the sinews 

plained in 82 D. ing of the cement of flesh and bones. I 

1 6. avr6 &; Ivwv eijia] The reading have therefore made the slight altera- 

of the mss. seems here unquestionably tion to O.VT&, which may, I think, be 

corrupt. The passage obviously refers justified as setting off the fluid against 

to the substance mentioned immediately the bones which it nourishes and the flesh 

above, the cement which joins flesh and which it fastens to them : it is itself no 

bones together. But this substance is not longer secreted and it therefore fails to 

blood, nor is the blood t% lvui> icai vetipuv nourish the bones and cement the flesh : 

airox^pt^/J-fov ; which the cement how- cf. 82 E r6 re atfj.0. avrb vpZrov di6\\v(ri, 

ever is, provided we understand Ivuv here Kul avrb otiSffj.iav TptHpqv eYi T<# <ru/j.a.Ti 

as signifying the fibrine of the flesh, not irap^x ct>Ta < t>^P rai - 

of the blood : see note on 82 D. It is 19. KaTa^^erai jiiv avro] The pe- 

plain then that aZ]ua is wrong ; and Lin- riosteum dries up and crumbles, and the 

dau's suggestion a/j.a seems to me a good flesh, no longer cemented to the bones, 

one. But furthermore av r6 surely can- falls away from them: cf. Aristotle hisloria 

not be right ; for av introduces an anti- an'imalium in xiii 5i9 b 5 ^iXoiVtewi re ra 

thesis where none exists, and the article ocrra ruv vptvuv <r<f>a,Kt\lfei. 

seems to mark the mention of some new 21. K TWV pio>v] The pifat are the 

substance, whereas Plato is still speak- irvQutves mentioned above in 83 E. 

316 riAATHNOS [84 B 

ical fieo-rd aXfir)*;, avral Be -rrd\iv els rrjv at/ 
<f>opdv e/JLTTca-oveai rd irpoa'Oev prjOevra voo~r)iiara TrXeuo rroiovcri. 
Xa\7r(av Be rovrwv Trepl ra a-ooaara TraOijfidrwv yiyvopevtov fui&l 
en, yiyverai rd jrpo rovrwv, 'orav ocrrovv Bid TruKvorrjra o~apKos 

5 dvarcvorjv pr) \apf3dvov iKavrjv, vir evpwros Qeppaivoaevov, <T<f>atce- 
\lffav fjiijre rrfv rpo<prjv KaraBexyrai ird\iv re avro els eKeivrfv C 
evavricos ly ^Tj^op-evov, rj 8' et9 <rdpKas, <rdp% Be els alpa ep/m- 
TTTovcra rpa^vrepa Trdvra rv irpocrdev rd vocnjf^ara aTrepyd^ijTai' 
TO 8' eayarov rcdvrwv, orav r) rov five\ov (ptvis air evBet'a? rj nvos 

10 u7T6p/SoXr/9 voa-r/crr), rd p-eyicrra teal Kvpiwrara irpos Odvarov roHv 
ro<Tr)p,dra)v aTrortXet, Tracr^? dvcnvdKiv T^? rov aa>fiaro<; 
e'^ dvdyKys pveicrrjs. 

XL. Tpirov B' av voa-rmdrwv e!So? TpiXP ^ 
yiyvofAevov, ro p.ev vrro TrvevfAaros, TO Be (fikey/jLaros, TO Be ^0X^9. D 

15 orav pev yap 6 rwv rrvevpdrtov To3 trta^an rafiias 7rXey/z<uy /i^ 
KaOapds Trape^y T9 Bie%6Bov<> VTTO pevadrcav <ppa^0ei<;, evda p,ev 
OIK lov, evda Be TT\IOV rj ro irpocrrJKOv irvevp^a eicnov rd aev ov 
rv<y%dvovra dvatyv%T}<i crrjTret, rd Be rwv <p\e/3a}V Biaftia^oaevov 
Kal %vve7ri(rrpe<pov avrd rrjtcov re ro (rwua e/9 TO aecrov avrov 

20 Bidcppayfid T' io-%ov eya?ro\a/i/3 fiver at, Kal pvpia Brj vocrr/uara E 

1 8 Siafiiaftfj.ei'oi' : ^La^ia^o^vuv A. 20 T' uiyov : rl a\ov A. 

i. ra, irpdo-Otv prjO^vra voo-qnaTa] health are sapped : the course of nature 

EC. the x^al and <(>\tyiJ.a.Ta. flows backward from its utmost fount. 

4. ra. irpo TOVTWV] i.e. when the de- 84 C 86 A, c. xl. A third class of 
generation begins further back ; the bones maladies remains for consideration : those 
being regarded as posterior in the order engendered by air, by phlegm, and by 
of ytveffts to the flesh. bile. When an excessive amount of air 

Bid irvKvoTtiTa <rapic6s] Perhaps then, passes into the veins and penetrating 

after all, if the gods had given our their sides finds its way into the flesh 

heads a thick covering of flesh, we might and is there imprisoned, various evil re- 

not have lived any the longer for it. suits follow ; in some cases convulsions 

5. dvairvoi]v] cf. 85 A, c : 'ventila- and tetanus, which will hardly yield to 
tion ' seems to be the meaning here. treatment, and diseases of the lungs. By 

6. TIJV Tpo<j>ijv] i.e. the oily fluid phlegm are produced leprosies and all 
which nourishes them. The bones de- manner of skin-diseases ; and when in 
compose and mingle with this fluid, the conjunction with bile it attacks the head, 
fluid with the flesh, and the flesh with the epilepsy ensues, which is called the 'sacred 
blood. disease', because it affects the divinest 

ii. ireio-ris dvdiraXiv] The juve\6s is part. All kinds of inflammatory dis- 

the very citadel of life ; so that when the orders, accompanied by pustules and 

disease assails that, the foundations of eruptions, arise from bile ; which also 

E] TIMAIOS. 317 

bare and full of brine, and itself falling back into the current of 
the blood aggravates the diseases that have been described. 
But distressing as are these symptoms which affect the body, 
yet more serious are those which are prior in order ; when the 
bones, owing to denseness of the flesh, cannot get sufficient air 
and becoming mouldy and heated decay away, and while they 
will not receive their nourishment, crumble down and return by 
a reversed process into their nourishing fluid, and that in its turn 
passing into flesh, and the flesh into blood, they render all the 
diseases more virulent than those already mentioned. The most 
desperate case of all is when the substance of the marrow be- 
comes diseased by any defect or excess : this produces the most 
serious and fatal disorders, seeing that the whole nature of the 
body is forced to proceed in a backward course. 

XL. A third class of diseases we must conceive as occurring 
in three ways : one by the agency of air, the second of phlegm, 
the third of bile. For when the lungs, which are the dispensers 
of air to the body, do not keep their passages clear, because 
they are impeded by catarrhs, the air, failing to pass through 
some, and in others entering with a volume unduly great, causes 
the decomposition of the parts which lack their supply of air, 
and forces its way through the channels of the veins and dis- 
locates them, and dissolving the body it is confined amid its 
substance, occupying the midriff; and so countless painful 
diseases are produced from these causes, accompanied by 

seizes upon the fibrine of the blood, and arising from the confinement of large 

preventing its due circulation causes chills quantities of air in places where it has no 

and shuddering ; and sometimes penetra- right to be. 

ting to the vital marrow sets free the 18. rd 8i TWV <j>Xpwv] Here again the 

soul : but if its fury be less violent, veins are considered as passages for air : 

it gives rise to diarrhoea and dysen- the ingress of air is normal ; it is the ex- 

tery. Continuous, quotidian, tertian, and cessive amount which gives rise to dis- 

quartan fevers are caused by a super- ease : see note on 82 E. 

abundance of fire, air, water, and earth 19. els TO (A&rov avrov] These words 

respectively predominating in the com- are best taken with tt>a.iro\a./j.pdi>erai. 

position of the body. But the sentence does not run smoothly, 

14. TO jiiv viro 7rvV|iTOs] This class and 1 suspect that something has gone 

of diseases is distinct from those caused amiss with it. Sia.<f>pay/j.a tffx ov i if the 

by a mere superfluity of air entering into words are sound, means taking possession 

the composition of the body. We are at of the midriff, pressing against it. 
present concerned with the maladies 


[8 4 E- 

K rovrwv d\yetvd fjierd 7r\ri6ov<> iBpuros aTreipyacrrat. 7ro\\dKt<; 
8' ev TO) (TWfjLart 8iaKpi@eia'r)<; crapKos rrvevp^a eyyevoftevov Kal 
dBvi'arovv eo> TropevBrjvai T<z9 avrds Tot9 eTretcr\r}\v06(Tiv wBlvas 
Trape<T)^e, neyiaras Be, orav irepl rd vevpa Kal rd ravri) <p\e(3ta 

5 Trepta-rdv Kal dvot8f)<rav rovs re ejrtrovovs teal rd ^vve^n vevpa 
ovrcos 649 TO e^OTTtcrOev Karareivrj rovrow a Brj Kal CLTT avrov T//? 
crvvrovias rov Tradr/paras rd voar^iara reravot re Kal orciaQorovot, 
Trpoa-epprjOijcrav. &v Kal TO (f>dpfj,aKov ^a\e7r6v Trvperol yap ovv 
8r) rd rotavra eyyiyvo/jtevoi ^d\t(rra \vova~t. TO Be \VKOV <$>\eyp.a 85 A 

10 Btd TO rwv 7roiJ,<f)o\vy(i)v Trvevfia r %a\e r jrov a7ro\7)(f>0ev, eo) Be rov 
dvairvods io~yov, rjiriwrepov }iev, Kara7rotKi\\ei Be TO 
\VKa<? d\<f>ovs re Kal rd rovrcov ^vyyevrj vocrr/fjiara diro- 

ev rr) Ke<j>a\f) Oeiordras ovcras eTricrKeBavvv/Aevov Kal ^vvrapdrrov 
15 auT9, Ka& VTTVOV pev lov Trpaorepov, eyprjyopoyi Be e7riri0efievov B 
Bv(ra7ra\\aKr6repov' vo&ijfj.a Be iepd<; ov <f)vo~e(t)<> evBtKOjrara lepov 
\eyerat. <j)\eyf^a &' 6v Kal d\/j,vpov Trrjyr) iravrwv voa^p^arwv, 
o<ra ytyverat KarappotKa' Bid Be TO 1)9 roirovs, ei9 01)9 pel, Travro- 
BaTrovs ovras Travrota ovbp,ara eT\,r]<f)ev. oo~a Be (frXey/jiaiveiv 

I TroXXdfcis post ISpwTOS inserunt AS. g tyyiyvonevoi : iinyiyvo^voi. S. 

i. nTa Tr\7]0ovs iSpwros] Plato evi- 
dently has in view consumption and kin- 
dred maladies. 

i. 5iaKpi9tioT]s arapKos] In the for- 
mer case the air entered from without : 
an equally bad, though different, result 
is produced when the imprisoned air has 
been produced within the body by disso- 
lution of the flesh. 

5. TOVS T CITITOVOVS] The tirtToiHi 
are the great tendons of the shoulders 
and arms. 

j. T*Tavo T Kal oirwrOoTOvoi] The 
first is the generic term for diseases the 
symptoms of which are spasmodic con- 
traction of the muscles : 6iri<rd^Tovos was 
a special form in which the muscles are 
drawn violently backwards : see Hippo- 
krates de morbis vol. II p. 303 Kiihn: the 
opposite form was tuirpoffOorovos. Aris- 
totle also attributes these disorders to the 
action of air: mcteorologica II viii $66 b 25 

oi re yap T^ravot Kal ol wafffJ-ol 7rvei'/iTos 
piv eiffi Kivr/fffts. 

8. iruptrol yap oSv Si]] Compare 
Hippokrates aphorisms vol. Ill p. 735 
Kiihn U7r6 <nraff/j.ov rj rtravov tvox^ovfj-tvy 
irvperbs tiriyfvbfjLevos \vei r& v6<rt]fj.a. Plato 
means that in cases which do not end 
fatally it is this natural relief, rather 
than medical treatment, which saves the 
patient's life. 

10. 8ui TO TCOV TroficjjoXv-yujv irvcifxa] 
The diseases produced by .the XCVK&V 
(f>\tyfj.a are ultimately to be traced to 
jrvev/j.a, since they are due to the air 
which is enclosed in the former . they are 
less dangerous however, because they are 
thrown off at the surface. 

12. XCVKO.S d\<f>ovs TC] These are 
diseases of the skin described by Celsus 
V xxviii 19. 

15. KO.&' iJirvov |iiv tov irpaorepov] ' In 
many epileptics the fits occur during the 

85 H] TIMAI02. 319 

excessive sweat. Often too when the flesh is broken up, air 
is formed in the body, and being unable to find an exit it pro- 
duces the same torments as are caused by the air which enters 
in ; the most severe of all, when gathering and swelling up 
around the sinews and the blood-vessels in these parts it strains 
the tendons of the shoulders and the muscles attached to them 
in a backward direction : and owing to the intense strain pro- 
duced in this condition these affections are called tetanus and 
opisthotonus. For these the remedy is severe : for in fact fevers 
supervening chiefly give relief in such cases. The white phlegm 
when intercepted is dangerous owing to the air in the bubbles : 
but when it finds an escape to the surface of the body it is more 
mild ; yet it disfigures the person by engendering scabs and 
leprosies and kindred maladies. Sometimes it is mingled with 
black bile and is shed upon the revolutions in the head, which 
are the most divine, and confounds them ; and if this occurs 
during sleep, the effects are milder, but if in the waking hours, it 
is harder to relieve. This, as affecting the sacred part, is justly 
called the sacred disease. Acid and saline phlegm is the source 
of all diseases that take the form of catarrh : and these have 
received manifold names according to the diverse places in 
which the discharge takes place. Inflammations in various parts 

night as well as during the day, but in oOev yiverai. <j>tio~iv 5 avry Kal irp6<t>aou>-\ 

some instances they are entirely nocturnal, ol avdpuirot tv6fju<rav 6elov elvai virb aireiplrjs I 

and it is well known that in such cases Kal Oavfj.a<ri6Tr)Tos, OTI ovotv ote er^p^o-i ! 

the disease may long exist and yet re- vofoouri. Kal Kara ntv TTJV dtropi^v av- 

main unrecognised either by the patient rot<n TOV ^ yivuo-Ktiv rb 6eiov aurrf Siaaq- 

or the physician.' Dr Affleck in the ferot, Kara 51 T>;J> evwopii)v TOU Tpjirov 

Encyclopaedia Britannica, article Epi- TTJS lijcrios IWVTO.I' diroXtiovTcu yap $ Ka.0j.p- 

Ifpsy. fj.oi<n fj eiraoiS-rjai. Plato, as his manner 

1 6. IvSiKwrara Upov Xfytrai] The is, adopts the popular appellation, but 

name ipd vtxros was given to epilepsy gives it a new and higher significance of 

because, owing to the suddenness of the his own : it is the sacred disease because 

attack and its appalling symptoms, it peculiarly affecting the divinest part of 

seemed like the direct visitation of some us. 

divine power, which without warning 18. Karappoucd] i. e. catarrhs, in what- 

struck down its victim. Hippokrates in ever part of the body they may occur, 
the true scientific spirit protests against 19. <f>Xryp.a.veiv Xlycrai] Notwith- 

this superstition: see de inorbo sacro vol. I standing the name <j>\fyfj.aii>fii>, Plato 

p. 587 Kiihn ovdh rl pot doictfi rCiv &\\uv would say, inflammations are not owing 

6ftorpr) elvai votiawv oudt iepbrrtpri, d\Xd to <f>\4yfj.a at all, but to 

320 TTAATHNOS [85 B 

\eyerai rov a-wfiaro^, OTTO rov tcdeo~0ai re teal (f>\eyo~0ai Bid 
%oX7/j> 76701/6 rcdvra. \afi^avov<Ta uev oiv draTrvorjv ef&> rcavrola C 
dva7re/j,irei fyvpara fceowra, KaOeipyvvfievT) 6 eWo9 Trvpitcavra 
voo~r)p,ara rro\\d ep,rroiel, ueyicrrov Be, 'Lrav a'lfiari icadapw ^vytce- 
5 paadelo~a TO rcav Ivcov yevos etc rrjs eavroav Bia<f>opf) Taea>9, at 
Biea-Trdpijaav fiev ei<t al/j,a, iva o-u//,/ier/9tw9 XeTrror^TO? icr^oi KOI 
Trd^ovf KOI fjUjre Bed 6ep^6rr}ra a><; vypov etc pavov rov o-co/iaro? 
etcpeoi, /ATJT* av Trvtcvorepov SVJKLVTJTOV ov /io\t9 dvacrrpetyoiTO ev 
rat9 ^>Xei/rt. tcaipov &rj TOVTOOV Ives rfj r^9 fyva-ews yeveo-ei <f>v\dr- D 
10 TOVCTIV 09 orav rt9 teal redvewro^ afyuiTO? eV i^u^et re 0^x09 7rpo9 
crvvaydyy, Bta^elrai irav TO XotTroy alp,a, eaOeicrat Be 
u fierd TOV Trepiea-Twros avro >Jri;^oi;9 ^vfJLfnjyvvaa-i. Tavrrjv 
Brj rrjv 8vva/j,iv e^ovcrwv Ivwv ev atfJMTt %oX?) (fiixrei TrdXaibv alp,a 
yeyovvla teal iraXiv etc TWV aapKwv et9 rovro rerrjicvla, deppr) KOI 
15 vypd Kar o\iyov TO Trp&Tov efnriTrrova-a irrjyvvTat, Bed TT/V TUIV E 
Ivwv Bvvapiv, vtpywp&mi Be KOI ftia KaTaa^evvvfieit} 
Kal rpofiov eVT09 Trap%ev TrXeiwv B* eTTippeovaa, rfj Trap 1 
0fp/j.6rijn icparrjcracra, Ta9 lva<? els dra^iav ^eaaaa Biecreicre' teal 
edv fJLev itcavrj Bid re\ov<i tcparrjo-ai yevrjrat, rrpos TO TOU\ov 
10 Biarrepdo-aca yevos Kalovtra e\vae rd rfjs "^^X^ avr66ei> olov 
&)9 Trelcrfiara fjuedr/tce re eXevOepav orav B' eXdrrcov y TO TC 
dvricr-^r) rrjKOf^evov, avrrj Kparrjdela'a rj Kara TTCLV TO o-a5/ii 
, rj Bid rwv <j>\eftwv 6/9 rrjv tcdro) gvvojaOeio-a 17 rr)v uvo) 
tcoikiav, olov <f>vyd<; etc ?roXe&)9 aracnaadcnf]^ etc rov cro'/xaTO9 
eKTTiTTrovo-a, Btappoias teal Bv<revrepia<; teal rd roiavra voa-r)p,ara 8G A 
rrdvra Trapeo-^ero. TO yttev ovv etc irvpo^i V7repj3o\rjs fj,d\iara 

8 //6\ts: noyis SZ. 9 rot/raw : TOUTOV A. 17 airrijs: avrrp AHS- 

22 au'rij : aCri; A. 

j. Sid xoXi^v y*Y OV TttVTa] This mation is much more dangerous. 

was, according to Aristotle, the opinion 7. IK jiavov TOV <T<O|MITOS CKp^oiJ i e. 

of Anaxagoras and his school : cf. de percolate through the substance of the 

partibus animalinm IV ii 67 7 a 5 otfic 6p0ws body. 

8^ MKaffiv ol irepl ' A ra^a-y 6pat> viro\a.(jL- 11. 8iax*tTau irdv TO Xowrov al(ia] 

fidvtiv ws aMav ovaav [sc. Trfv "xo\-f)v] rv Hence we see that although Plato con- 

b&uv voatinaTuv vTTfppd\\ovffav ydpdirop- ceived that flesh was foimed by conden- 

pali'ftv wpos re T&V wXetinova Kal rdj 0X^- sation of the l\_u>p (82 D), he did not 

/3as Kal rd irXevpd. suppose that blood deprived of the ivtt 

2. Xap.pdvovcra jj.ii/ oiv avairvo^v] would coagiilate on exposure to the air. 

i.e. when it is thrown off in an eruption: 13. iraXaiov aljia yfyovvia] The flesh 

Plato is aware that the suppressed inflam- is formed of the Mood, and xM (that is, 

86 A] TIM AIDS. 321 

of the body, so called from the heat and burning that occurs, 
are all due to bile. When they have egress, they seethe up and 
send forth all kinds of pustules ; but if they are suppressed 
within, they cause many inflammatory diseases ; of which the 
worst is when the inflammation entering into pure blood carries 
away from its proper place the fibrine which was distributed 
through the blood in order that it might preserve a due measure 
of thinness and thickness and neither be so much liquefied by 
heat as to flow out through the porous texture of the body, nor 
become sluggish from excessive density and circulate with 
difficulty in the veins. Now the fibrine by the nature of its 
composition preserves the due mean in these respects. For if 
from blood that is dead and beginning to cool the fibrine be 
gathered apart, the rest of the blood is dissipated ; but if the 
fibrine be allowed to remain, by the help of the cold air sur- 
rounding, it quickly congeals it. The fibrine then in the blood 
having this property, bile which is naturally formed of old blood 
and is dissolved again into blood out of the flesh, enters warm 
and liquid into the blood, at first gradually, and is condensed by 
the power of the fibrine ; and as it is condensed and forced to 
cool, it produces internal chill and shivering. But when a 
greater quantity flows in, it subdues the fibrine with its heat, 
and boiling up scatters it abroad ; and if it is able to obtain the 
mastery to the end, it penetrates to the substance of the marrow, 
and consuming it looses from thence the bonds of the soul, as it 
were the moorings of a ship, and sets her free. But when the 
bile is too feeble for this, and the body holds out against the 
dissolution, itself is vanquished, and either is expelled by an 
eruption over the whole body, or is driven through the veins 
into the lower or upper belly, like an exile banished from a city 
that has been at civil war ; and as it issues forth from the body, 
it causes diarrhoea and dysentery and all diseases of that kind. 
When a body has been stricken with sickness chiefly through 

i) of a morbid nature) is formed by 62 A, B : rd irapa <pvcriv j-wayAufvov /u.a'xe- 

degeneration of the flesh, and hence is rcu Kara <j>vai.v atfrd tavrb efc rovvavriov 

Tra\aibi> al/M. awuOovv. 

16. x* 1 ! 1 1 " 1 Ka ^ Tpojiov] The solidifi- 20. olov veos ircCc-fiaTa] Compare 

cation of the X ^ 7 ? causes tremor and 73 t> KaOairep ^ dyKVpuv fta\\6fievos K 

shivering on the principle enunciated in rovrwv TTO.OW i/a/x^s df<r/j.ov*. 

P. T. 21 



[86 A- 

voar]crav <rwpa ^vve^fj Kavfiara teal irvperovs aTrepyd^eTai, TO 
8' eg aepo9 d/j,<j>7)fj,epi,vov<;, TpiTaiov? 8' v8aro<; Bid TO vwdea-repov 
depos KOI Trvpos avro elvai' TO 8' ex yfjs, rrdprci)<; bv vcodecrrarov 
TOVTWV, ev TTpair\acriai<$ TrepioSois %povov KaOaipofievov, rerap- 

5 raiof 9 Trvperovs Troirjaav aVaXXarTeTat fioyis. 

XLI. Kat Ta fj,ev Trepl TO o~w/ia vocrrjuara ravrrj u/>i/3euVei B 
yiyvopeva, rd Se Trepl ^v^rjv 8td <ra)//-aT09 eiv rfjSe. vbaov fiev 
o~rj "fywxf)<$ avoiav gvy^wprjreov, &vo S' dvoi'a? yevrj, TO pev fiavtav, 
TO Se dfiaOiav. trdv ovv o TI Trdcr^cov Tt9 Trd6o<$ biroTepov CLVTWV 

10 to"^et, voffov TrpoffpijTeov, ySovds Se /cat Xu7ra9 V7rpj3a\\ov<ra<; TWV 
VQcrcov fteyio-Tas BeTeov TT) "^v^fj- Trepi^aprj 1 } yap avO pwrros wv 
ff Kal rdvavTia inro Xu7r79 trda-^cov, crTrevSwv TO (j,ev e\eiv aKaipox;, c 
TO 8e (frvyelv, ovff* opdv OVTG dicoveiv opdov ovSev SvvaTcu, \VTTO, 
8e teal \oyianov fj,Taa^eiv ^KICTTO TOTC Brj SvvaTos ecrTt. TO 8e 

3 ri> 5' tic : TO 5^ SZ. 

5 /J.oyis, ut videtur, A. 


2. d(i(}>rip.pivovs] i.e. cases in which 
there is a period of fever and a period of 
relaxation in every twenty-four hours. 
As Martin observes, the names given to 
these recurrent fevers denote, not their 
period, but the number of days necessary 
for determining the period : thus in a 
Tpiraios there is a day of fever and a day 
of relief; the fever returning on the third 
day marks the period as comprising two 
days: similarly in a TeTapraTos there is a 
day of fever and two days of relief, the 
fever returning on the fourth day. Galen 
de plac. Hipp, d Plat, nil 697 disputes 
Plato's account of fever, which he ascribes 
not to the four elements, but to the four 
primary fluids of the body. The ancient 
medical writers also mention a species of 
tertian fever called rj/AirpiTatos, the period 
of which was thirty-six hours of fever 
(more or less) and twelve hours of com- 
parative relaxation ; see Celsus in 3, in 8. 
86 B 87 B, c. xli. Maladies of the 
soul arise from morbid conditions of 
the body. Now the sickness of the soul 
is foolishness ; and of this there are two 
kinds, madness and ignorance. Plea- 
sure and pain in excess are the most 
calamitous of mental disorders, for they 

lead a man vehemently to seek one thing 
and eschew another without reflection or 
understanding. Whenever the seminal 
marrow is abundant and vigorous, it 
prompts to indulgence in bodily pleasures 
which enfeeble the soul. But the profli- 
gate are unjustly reproached as criminals: 
in truth they are sick in soul. For no 
one is willingly evil ; this comes to a man 
against his will through derangement. 
For when the vicious humours of the 
body are pent up therein and find no 
vent, the vapours of them rise up and 
choke the movements of the soul at all 
her seats, causing moroseness and melan- 
choly, rashness and cowardice, forgetful- 
ness and dulness. And these evils are 
further aggravated by bad institutions 
and teaching and lack of wholesome 
training. Wherefore the teachers are 
more to blame than the sinners themselves, 
whom we ought to strive to bring into a 
healthier habit of mind. 

7. 810 crco(JLa.Tos Q-iv] The corporeal 
eis which cause sickness to the soul 
may be classified in two divisions, (i) sus- 
ceptibility to pleasures and pains (these 
arise from <rw/ttaros ?y, because, al- 
though it is the soul, not the body that 




excess of fire, it exhibits continued inflammations and fevers ; 
excess of air causes quotidian fevers ; excess of water tertian, 
because it is more sluggish than air or fire ; excess of earth, 
which is by four measures most sluggish of all, being purged 
in a fourfold period of time, gives rise to quartan fevers, and is 
with difficulty banished. 

XLI. Such are the conditions connected with diseases of the 
body; those of the soul depend upon bodily habit in the following 
way. We must allow that disease of the soul is senselessness; and 
of this there are two forms, madness and stupidity. Every con- 
dition then in which a man suffers from either of these must be 
termed a disease. We must also affirm that the gravest maladies 
of the soul are excessive pleasures or pains. For if a man is 
under the influence of excessive joy, o,r, on the other hand, of 
extreme pain, and is eager unduly to grasp the one or shun the 
other, he is able neither to see nor to hear anything aright ; he is 
delirious, and at that moment entirely unable to obey reason. 

perceives them, yet they affect the soul 
through the body), which blind a man to 
his real interest and highest happiness : 
(2) physical ill health, which, by enfee- 
bling the parts through which the soul 
acts upon the body, impedes her actions 
and stifles her intelligence. Compare 
Phaedo 66 B (jivpias ^v yap -qfjuv d<rxoX'as 
irap^xd T & v&V-a- Si&rty avayKaiai>rpo<f>r]t>' 
in 5' av rtces i>6croi irpoffir^ffuffiv, 

8. TO (J.iv jiavtav, TO 5e d(ia6Cav] 
This classification, though not discordant, 
is not identical with that given in Sophist 
228 A foil. In that passage we have two 
etdri of Ka.Kia in the soul, one being a 
vbffos or (rrdffis, the other alexw or d/ae- 
rp'ia. The voeros is Troifr>pia, the al(rx os 
is dyvoia. Further dyvoia is subdivided 
into a/Jiadia, defined as rb ^ Karfidbra n 
SoKflv fititvcu, and ra a\\a fJ-tprj dyvolas, 
which are left unnamed. In the Timaeus 
the distinction between vo<ros and oltrxos 
is sunk : for all that belongs to wovnpla. in 
the Sophist here falls under dvoia, whereof 
La also is a form. This does not 

mean any ethical discrepancy between 
the two dialogues ; rather the minuter 
Siaipeffis of the Sophist is made in further- 
ance of the dialectical ends of that dia- 
logue, but is needless for the ethical 
object of the present passage. &p.a.6ia can 
hardly be translated by any English 
word : it signifies ignorance combined 
with dulness which hinders the diiadris 
from perceiving his ignorance. It must 
also be observed that /j,ai>ia is not simply 
' madness ' in the ordinary sense of the 
word: as &p.a.Bla. is a defect of the Belov tldos 
TTJS ^vxfc, a failure of reason, so is p.a.v