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[109.]1 Of things existing some are spoken of2 with reference to themselves, and some with reference to another thing. Those that are spoken of with reference to themselves, are as many as do not need any thing in the way of explanation. Now these would be a man, a horse, and the rest of animals; for of these not one is currently understood by means of an interpretation; but of those that are spoken of with reference to another3 thing (there are) as many as need some explanation; as for instance, that which is greater than something, and that which is quicker than something, and that which is more beautiful (than something),4 and the like. For the greater is greater than the less, and the quicker (than the slower).5 Of things then existing some are spoken of with reference to themselves, and some with reference to another6 thing. And so too the first is divided according to Aristotle.7
There was likewise another Plato,8 a philosopher of Rhodes, a disciple of Panastius, as Seleucus the grammarian says in the first book " On Philosophy;" and another, a Peripatetic, a disciple of Aristotle; 9 and another, (a son) of Praxiphanes, and a writer of the old comedy.9
1 This section begins in Menage's ed. with Tuv Si irpdff n—a little lower.
'I have translated, as if the Greek were aXKo Xeyopeva, not Xiyerai.
* Here, as in aXXo seems to have dropt out.
* After K&wiov I have inserted, what the balance of the sentence eridently requires.
5 Here too the train of ideas demands, not nvog, but f}pa$iovot— what I have translated.
* See at s and «.
'In lieu of 'AptorortXijv, one would prefer 'ApiarorkXaov— See at § 82, note.
8 Perhaps to this Plato is to be attributed some of the spurious dialogues.
*—* The words between the numerals are thus rendered by E. Smith, "And one more, the son of Praxiphanes, a comic poet, that wrote ate the ancient manner of freedom, without respect of persons, in imitation of Aristophanes." With regard to the comic writer being the son of Praxiphanes, Meineke appears to doubt it; at least he has not mentioned it in his Histor. Critic. Comic. Grsecor., nor has Fabricius in Biblioth. Grass, nor Cobet in his Observat. Crit. in Platonis Comici Belliquias.
LIFE OF PLATO,
IIESYCHIUS OF MILETUS.
Plato the philosopher is said to have never undergone even once the marriage-state or sexual intercourse. And they say that his mother became pregnant from a divine vision when Apollo appeared to her; but when she had brought forth Plato, that then her husband cohabited with her. and that being with 1 broad shoulders or face he was called Platobut some assert that he was so called from being 2 broad in his discourses.2 Hence Timon, while ridiculing him, says in his Farcical verses—
The broadest man led all, but with sweet voice
He talk'd, the picture of the Tettix kind,
That settling on the trees of Hecademus,
Their pleasant note pour forth—
For the spot, which (is now) Academia, was formerly called Hecademia. He made for himself a mingling of the doctrines of Heraclitus, Pythagoras, and Socrates. For on things, perceptible by the senses, he philosophized according to Heracleitus; on those, perceptible by mind, according to Pythagoras; but on those, relating to politics, according to Socrates. He was likewise much indebted to Epicharmus. For Epicharmus3 says—"The wise assert that the soul perceives some things through the body; as, for example, by
'—1 To understand this remark the reader should bear in mind that the Greek for " broad " is wXar-vs, a word very similar to vrXar-ajv.
If my emendation of tipiavuae for ep/ii/vfi'oc, in Diogen. L. f 4, be correct, we must read here yiXuiat in lieu of Xoyoic.
1 In Diogen. L. § 12, this saying is attributed to Alcimus.
hearing and seeing; but on other things it reflects itself by itself, without making any use of the body: and hence, of the things that exist, some are perceptible by the senses, and some by the mind." On which account Plato has said that it is requisite for those, who desire to look into the principles of the Universe, to separate, in the first place, ideas, themselves by themselves, such as similitude, and unity, and number, and magnitude, and rest, and motion: secondly, to lay down itself by itself, beauty, and goodness, and justice, and such kind of things: and, thirdly, to look into such of the ideas as have a relation to each other, to wit, science, or magnitude, or arbitrary power, and to consider that what are with us have the same name as those, through their participating in them— I mean, that things are just, such as (participate in) the abstractedly just; and are beautiful, such as (participate in) the abstractedly beautiful; and that each of the species is eternal, and a notion,1 and, moreover, not subject to circumstances. Hence he says likewise that ideas exist2 in nature, as if they were patterns; and that the rest of things are like to them, as being their resemblances. Epicharmus too thus expresses himself touching the abstractedly good, and ideas—
Seems not the case then to be thus about
The good? that of itself it is a thing;
And he, who learning knows it, good becomes;
Just as a piper, who has learnt to pipe,
Or to dance has a dancer learnt, or some
Weaver to weave, or what you will of trades
Like these, himself's the artist, not the art.
Plato accompanied Chabrias, the general, on trial for a capital charge, when not one of the citizens was willing to do so; and when Crobylus the informer met him as he was going up, together with Chabrias, to the Acropolis, and said—"Art thou come to plead on the side of another, not knowing that the hemlock of Socrates awaits thee? he replied—" When too I served in the army for the sake of fatherland, I endured dangers; and now for the sake of duty on account of a friend I will endure them." But though he was such a kind of
1 Although vori/ia is found both here and in Diogen. L. § 13, yet one would prefer in both places Vbt\tov, as suggested there by Menage.
1 I have followed Fischer, in changing iardvai into itnavai, as read in Diogen. L. § 13.
person, he was nevertheless scoffed at by the writers of comedy. At least Theopompus says—
For one is none,
and Anaxandrides too in his " Theseus "—
When olives he devoured, that Plato loves;
and Timon likewise, while thus playing on the letters (of his name)—
As Plato plaits, in plaited wonders skill'd.
Alexis in "Meropis "—
Thou'rt come in time; since I, in doubtings tost,
and in " Alien "—
A. Thou speak'st of what thou knowest not one jot.
B. Mind has with Plato been a-running.
A. Know'st thou,
B. Not I.
Amphis in " Amphicrates "—
A. What is the good, which you are about to have
On questions which he comprehended, Plato exhibits his opinions; and falsehoods he confutes; but on points that are uncertain he holds back. And what he has made up his mind upon, he exhibits by means of four characters, Socrates, Timaeus 1 the Athenian Guest, and the one from Elea;1 but amongst those confuted for falsehoods he introduces Thrasymachus, Callicles, Polus, (and) Gorgias. He asserted that the principle of the soul was arithmetical, but of the body, geometrical; and he defined it to be an idea of a breath standing apart on every side, and that it is self-moved 2 and tripartite.2
1—1 The words between the numerals have been properly supplied by Fischer, from Diogen. L. § 52, and so have those between (2—2) from §67.
LIFE OF PLATO,
Come then, let us speak of the family of the philosopher, not for the sake of prolixity,1 but of benefit rather and instruction to those, who betake themselves to him. For he was not "a Nobody,"2 but rather—
3 To many of mankind he was a care.3
For Plato is said to have been a son of his father Ariston, the son of Aristocles, from whom he carried up his family to Solon, the law-giver; and hence he wrote, in imitation of his ancestor, the Laws in twelve books, and a Political Constitution in eleven.4 He came into the world by his mother Perictione, who was descended from Neleus, the son of Codrus.5 For they say that Apollo in a vision had an intercourse with his mother Perictione, and, appearing in the night to Ariston, ordered him to have no connexion with Perictione until the time of her bringing forth.6 And so he acted. And his pa
1 I have adopted irokvriKoias, suggested by Windet, instead of n-oXwotac.
s Here is an allusion to the name Ovrig, assumed by Ulysses to enable him to deceive the Cyclops. It has been twice restored to Plato by myself; once in Hipp. Maj. § 24, and again in Alcibiad. II. § 23.
3—3 Here too is an allusion to OS. A. 177.
* How this number is to be made up, it is difficult to state distinctly. Perhaps Olympiodorus meant to unite the Critias with the 10 books of the Republic.
9 According to Diogen. L. iii. 1, and Apuleius, the father, not the mother, was a descendant of Codrus.
6 I have adopted afforeSewc, similar to awoKvrjatug in Diogen. § 2, as suggested by Windet, for airoTd&wg.