previous next

[865] ὧν νόμοι πρόκεινται ὑψίπ. “for which (enjoining which) laws have been set forth, moving on high,” —having their sphere and range in the world of eternal truths: ὑψίποδες being equiv. to ὑψηλοὶ καὶ ὑψοῦ πατοῦντες: see on οἰόζωνον 846, and contrast χθονοστιβῆ 301. The metaphor in νόμοι was less trite for a Greek of the age of Sophocles than for us: cp. Plat. Laws 793aτὰ καλούμενα ὑπὸ τῶν πολλῶν ἄγραφα νόμιμαοὔτε νόμους δεῖ προσαγορεύειν αὐτὰ οὔτε ἄρρητα ἐᾶν.

πρόκεινταιThuc. 3.45ἐν οὖν ταῖς πόλεσι πολλῶν θανάτου ζημία πρόκειται”) strengthens the metaphor: Xen. Mem. 4.4.21δίκην γέ τοι διδόασιν οἱ παραβαίνοντες τοὺς ὑπὸ τῶν θεῶν κειμένους νόμους, ἣν οὐδενὶ τρόπῳ δυνατὸν ἀνθρώπῳ διαφυγεῖν, ὥσπερ τοὺς ὑπ᾽ ἀνθρώπων κειμένους νόμους ἔνιοι διαφεύγουσι τὸ δίκην διδόναι”: where Socrates speaks of the ἄγραφοι νόμοι which are ἐν πάσῃ χώρᾳ κατὰ ταὐτὰ νομιζόμενοι, —as to revere the gods and honour parents. Aristot. Rh. 1.13.2: ‘I consider law (νόμον) as particular (ἴδιον) or universal (κοινόν), the particular law being that which each community defines in respect to itself, —a law partly written, partly unwritten [as consisting in local custom]; the universal law being that of nature (τὸν κατὰ φύσιν). For there is a certain natural and universal right and wrong which all men divine (μαντεύονται), even if they have no intercourse or covenant with each other; as the Antigone of Sophocles is found saying that, notwithstanding the interdict, it is right to bury Polyneices’ (Soph. Ant. 454, where she appeals to the ἄγραπτα κἀσφαλῆ θεῶν νόμιμα). Cp. Cope's Introd. to Aristot. Rh. p. 239.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: