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[378d] that is the sort of thing that ought rather to be said by their elders, men and women, to children from the beginning and as they grow older, and we must compel the poets to keep close to this in their compositions. But Hera's fetterings1 by her son and the hurling out of heaven of Hephaestus by his father when he was trying to save his mother from a beating, and the battles of the gods2 in Homer's verse are things that we must not admit into our city either wrought in allegory3 or without allegory. For the young are not able to distinguish what is and what is not allegory, but whatever opinions are taken into the mind at that age are wont to prove

1 The title of a play by Epicharmus. The hurling of Hephaestus, Iliad i. 586-594.

2 Iliad xx. 1-74; xxi. 385-513.

3 ὑπόνοια: the older word for allegory; Plutarch, De Aud. Poet. 19 E. For the allegorical interpretation of Homer in Plato's time cf. Jebb, Homer, p. 89, and Mrs. Anne Bates Hersman's Chicago Dissertation:Studies in Greek Allegorical Interpretation.

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