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‘Now the origin of this was due, as is natural, to the poets: for not only are all names imitations (copies of things, which they are supposed to represent), but there was also the voice ready for use, the most imitative of all our members; and so it was (in virtue of the same imitative faculty, Victorius) that the arts were composed, that of rhapsodizing and of acting and of course (γε, to be sure) others’.

κινεῖν, in the sense of originating anything, ‘to stir, set in motion’, is found in Plut. Solon. 95 B, ἀρχομένων δὲ τῶν περὶ τὸν Θέσπιν ἤδη τὴν τραγῳδίαν κινεῖν1 (Victorius). Sext. Empir., adv. Math. VII 6, quotes Aristotle as having said that Empedocles πρῶτον ῥητορικὴν κεκινηκέναι: and Quintilian, III 1. 8, doubtless also with reference to Aristotle, repeats this, primus post eos...movisse aliqua circa rhetoricen Empedocles dicitur. Sext. Empir. again, p. 546, Bekk. adv. Math. X. πρὸς ἠθικούς § 2, of Socrates' ‘origination’ of the study of Moral Philosophy, πρῶτος αὐτὴν δόξας κεκινηκέναι. See Spalding ad loc. Quint., who quotes Athen. XIV 629 C, ὅθεν ἐκινήθησαν αἱ καλούμεναι πυῤῥίχαι. Movere eodem sensu apud Quint. III 6. 10, 103, IV 1. 29.

ὀνόματα μιμήματα] This is the Platonic theory, Cratyl. 423 A seq. The conclusion is, 423 B, ὄνομα ἄρα ἐστίν, ὡς ἔοικε, μίμημα φωνῆς ἐκείνου, μιμεῖται καὶ ὀνομάζει μιμούμενος τῇ φωνῇ, ἂν μιμῆται. “Olympiodorus ad Philebum Platonis tradit Democritum nomina vocales imagines rerum appellare consuevisse, ὅτι ἀγάλματα φωνήεντα καὶ ταῦτά ἐστι τῶν θεῶν, ὡς Δημόκριτος.” Victorius. Aristotle himself, de Interpretatione, sub init. 16 a 3, calls words τῶν ἐν τῇ ψυχῇ παθημάτων σύμβολα, and afterwards, line 7, ὁμοιώματα, signs or representatives, and copies, of mental affections, i. e. impressions, a theory quite different from that of Plato, which is here adopted. On the terms applied by Aristotle to express the nature of words, see Waitz, on Organon 16 a 4. Of the four employed, he says, σύμβολον is a subjective σημεῖον, and ὁμοίωμα an objective μίμημα. On imitation and the natural love of it, the origin and foundation of all the fine arts, see the first three chapters of the Poetics. In c. 4, init. imitation or mimicry is described as natural to man from infancy, and characteristic of humanity. [Dionysius Halic. de comp. verb. p. 94 (quoted in Farrar's Chapters on Language, chap. XI), μεγάλη τούτων ἀρχὴ καὶ διδάσκαλος φύσις, ποιοῦσα μιμητικοὺς ἡμᾶς καὶ θετικοὺς τῶν ὀνομάτων, οἷς δηλοῦται τὰ πράγματα.]

τὰ γὰρ ὀνόματα κ.τ.λ.] This is introduced to account for the poets having been the first who devoted themselves to the study of style or language, in this sense. Words being the copies of things, the poets, whose object is imitation, addicted themselves to the study of them, in order to be able better to represent the things of which they were images. Victorius.

αἱ τέχναι συνέστησαν] Some of the writers on rhapsodizing, with which was naturally combined the criticism of Homer, are mentioned in Plat. Ion. 530 C, Metrodorus of Lampsacus, Stesimbrotus of Thasos (Xenoph. Conv. III 6), and Glaucon, probably of Teos, mentioned above, § 3.

1 Welcker, Nachtrag, p. 239, note 175, accuses Bentley of a ‘wonderful blunder’ in the interpretation of κινεῖν in this passage, in saying, viz., that it signifies ‘the first beginning of tragedy’—which it most undoubtedly does—and understands it himself of ‘disturbing, altering’, as κινεῖν νόμους (and the proverb μὴ κίνει Καμάριναν, “let well alone,” quieta non movere, “let sleeping dogs lie”). He says that Bentley's rendering is längst widerlegt. [Bentley, On Phalaris, 1 pp. 284, 386, ed. Dyce, pp. 262, 309, ed. Wagner.]

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